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Green Shirt Day promotes organ donation

David Ayres, a zamboni driver and emergency back-up goalie for the Carolina Hurricanes, Joyce Van Deurzen, executive director of The Kidney Foundation of Canada, Alberta and Saskatchewan branch, and Toby Boulet, father of Logan Boulet. Photo by Michelle Hofer, The Kidney Foundation of Canada.

The third annual Green Shirt Day is one month away.

Leading up to Green Shirt Day on April 7, The Kidney Foundation of Canada is asking Canadians to take the time to consider organ and tissue donation, find out how to register in their province or territory, and most importantly have a conversation.

Logan Boulet inspired people to register as organ donors. He was one of the Humboldt Broncos killed in a bus crash.

“Together Strong” is the 2021 Green Shirt Day slogan, encouraging Canadians to unite on-line and bring enthusiasm and green shirts to their on-line platforms.

People are asked to wear green on Tuesday, April 7 and find out about how to participate at greenshirtday.ca/be-inspired.

This year, with COVID-19 restrictions in effect to varying degrees across the country, it is key that Canadians get creative about how to raise awareness about organ and tissue donation. 

“Though the pandemic may keep us apart, ‘Together Strong’, the 2021 Green Shirt Day campaign slogan, reminds us to unite on-line to inspire conversations about the powerful impact of organ donation,” said Toby Boulet, father of Logan Boulet, one of the Humboldt Broncos killed in a 2018 bus crash.

It is estimated that almost 150,000 Canadians registered as organ and tissue donors in the weeks following the 2018 Humboldt crash that took Logan Boulet’s life and led to him becoming an organ and tissue donor.

To date, this is the largest number of Canadians registering to become organ donors in Canadian history due to one event or one person and it became known as the “Logan Boulet Effect.”

There is more work to be done, and more who could be inspired.

Donation rates across Canada and in Alberta are still low.

Ninety per cent of Canadians say they support organ and tissue donation, but less than 23 per cent have made plans to donate.

There are 4,400 Canadians waiting for an organ transplant.  Every year, on average, 250 people in Canada die because they do not get the life-saving organ they need.

Green Shirt Day honours  Logan Boulet and all donors for their generosity.

“We want people to have the kitchen table talk with their family about organ donation,” Toby Boulet said. “Even more important than registering to donate, have that talk. We know firsthand how important that is.”

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