FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — April is National Donate Life Month and an organ recovery organization in Indiana is getting creative to spread the word about organ donation amid the COVID-pandemic.
With Bureau of Motor Vehicle branches closed in many parts of the country and state to help prevent the spread of the virus, Donate Life Indiana is teaming up with Boy Scouts of America to help spread the word, while also keeping everyone safe. The partnership has led to the creation of a new patch program in response to COVID-19.
“The Boy Scouts are all about service learning and wanting to help others,” said Andi Amburgey Atherine, co-director of Donate Life Indiana. “This is an easy three-step process and you can earn a donation awareness badge and you are doing something for the good of the community.”
The program originated with the Boy Scout’s Sagamore Council, which is based out of Kokomo, and has been passed to the council in Fort Wayne and other Indiana councils to follow suit.
“One of the most important aspects of this program is the encouraging of our young people, our scouts, to have open conversations with their families [about organ donation],” said John Gliot, Scout Executive of Boy Scouts of America Anthony Wayne Area Council. “It will encourage the conversation to start to happen in our families.”
Through the program, the scouts will engage in virtual learning about organ donation and will do service projects from home in order to earn the awareness badge.
“After watching an educational video, they can be creative,” Amburgey Atherine said. “They can create something they can hang on their window. If they are in a neighborhood or even if they are out in the country, somebody could walk by and take notice. They also could wear blue and green, snap a picture, everybody is on social media now, and have an adult post it and recognize this is donation awareness.”
Scouts are also encouraged to use printables provided by Donate Life Indiana to raise awareness from home.
The patch earned through the program has the colors blue and green and the Donate Life logo which represents represent the sky, earth and the circle of life. It also includes the Boy Scouts logo, to recognize the importance of the 113,000 people nationwide and 1,300 Hoosiers waiting for an organ.
A similar patch program will be opened to the Girl Scouts, Amburgey Atherine added.
To register to donate life online, go to donatelifeindiana.org. You can also sign up on the national registry through an iPhone health app.
Watch our full interviews with Donate Life Indiana and Boy Scouts of America Anthony Wayne Area Council:
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