Be A Hero: Almost 27,000 people in Yorkshire sign organ donor register in just three months of campaign

James Hodgson, nine, who had a liver transplant in 2008, with his mum Rachel. Picture by Simon Hulme.

Thanks to the amazing selflessness of people in Yorkshire almost 27,000 people have signed up to the NHS Organ Donor Register in three months.

The incredible total comes just 12 weeks after the Be A Hero campaign, led by Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust (LTH), launched.

James Hodgson pictured at his home at Sandal, Wakefield. Picture by Simon Hulme.

In Leeds alone 5,000 people have joined up after Be A Hero set about raising awareness of organ donation and the need for people to discuss their wishes.

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The campaign started after it emerged that just 42 Leeds families, and 114 across Yorkshire, consented to organ donation last year as around 800 people in the county await lifesaving transplants.

Throughout the campaign we have tried to highlight the stories of those desperately in need of transplants as well as the brave families that have consented to donation.

Nine-year-old James Hodgson’s life was saved by a transplant in 2008, after a liver disorder left him severely ill.

His mum Rachel, from Wakefield, has been overwhelmed by the support for the campaign and has allowed James’ brother Harry, 16, to sign up.

She said: “It’s fantastic and it has made it worthwhile for us to go back through James’ story. For people to see in the paper and on TV has really got the message across.”

Dr Simon Flood, clinical lead for organ donation at LTH, feels the number of sign ups so far is “incredible” but feels there is more work to be done.

He said: “We hope to get Yorkshire signed up so that in the future, everyone who needs an organ will get one in time.”

Three people die every day die waiting for an organ transplant in the UK. One donor can save up to nine lives.

To sign the register visit leedsth.nhs.uk/be-a-hero.

GET INVOLVED

We’re urging residents to sign the NHS Organ Donor Register and become a hero.

To raise the profile of Be A Hero we’re also urging workplaces and communities to support the campaign through anything from putting up a Be A Hero poster to hosting a superhero day. You can even download a #BeAHero mask from leedsth.nhs.uk/be-a-hero and tweet your superhero selfies to @Leedsnews and @LTHTrust using the hashtag #BeAHero.

Supporters can also send #BeAHero messages of support to facebook.com/yep.newspaper or facebook.com/yorkshirepost.newspaper or send their tales of organ donation via email to jonathan.brown@ypn.co.uk.

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