Monroe County Clerk Cheryl Dinolfo was joined by representatives of the National Kidney Foundation, Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network and the Rochester Eye & Tissue Bank to kick off Donate Life Month. Throughout the month of April, County Clerks throughout New York are partnering with the New York State DMV and The New York Alliance for Donation to encourage residents to sign up to become organ donors.
“Giving the gift of life through organ donation is something we all should strongly consider,” said Dinolfo, who is also a board member of the National Kidney Foundation. “There is a tremendous need for more donors not just in Monroe County, but throughout New York, and across our Country.”
Residents can become organ donors when they apply or renew their Driver’s License in local DMV offices or through www.donatelifenys.net. The website also contains links to useful information to educate the public about organ donation.
Lauren Aggen, a heart recipient, Cait Brogan, a kidney recipient and Steve Karnisky, whose son, Rich, was an organ and tissue donor, joined Dinolfo in urging the community to support organ donation.
"Enrolling in the registry takes only a few minutes and can literally save many lives,” said Rob Kochik, executive director of the Finger Lakes Donor Recovery Network. “After you enroll, please tell your family members so they know your wishes to become a donor. Family members often tell us they are happy to support their loved one's decision to donate and are relieved they do not have to make the decision for them."
"At this time more than 106,000 people are awaiting organ transplants in this nation, 10 percent are New Yorkers,” said Karen Guarino from the Rochester Eye & Tissue Bank. “Each year more than 1.5 million individuals receive tissue transplants such as cornea, heart valve and bone."