A SCARBOROUGH woman who received a life-saving heart transplant nine years ago is asking people to support National Transplant Week, which runs until Sunday.
Amelia Scholey, 23, is hoping people will spare a thought for the 10,000 people still waiting for a transplant and sign the organ donor register today.
She was diagnosed with restrictive cardiomyopathy after losing her 16-year-old brother Daniel to a similar condition - hypertrophic cardiomyopathy - in October 2001.
Amelia was treated with medication, but her condition deteriorated so she was referred to Great Ormond St Hospital.
Once there, Amelia was told she needed a new heart and was put on the waiting list in June 2002. She finally got the call in August.
However, in a tragic twist, her new heart failed to beat once it was transplanted, so Amelia was kept alive by machines for four days until another heart was found.
Luckily, this second transplant worked and almost nine years later, Amelia is still cherishing every moment.
Amelia, who works in the M&S cafe in Newborough and is also a keen Guide leader, is taking the opportunity to remind you to “think about it, talk about it, and to sign the organ donor register”.
She has set up her own campaign called “Amelia’s campaign” which aims to raise £10,000 to be split between the British Heart Foundation and Live Life Then Give Life.
Emily Thackray, chairman of the charity Live Life Then Give Life, said: “Almost all of us support the concept of organ donation.
“However just 28 per cent have signed the organ donor register.
“Because of the chronic shortage of donors, three people on the waiting list die every single day. It’s heartbreaking knowing they could have been saved, simply by someone saying ‘yes’.”
Amelia said: “Since my transplant I have been able to do several things I’d never thought I’d have the chance to do and seen parts of the world I’d only dreamed of.
“If it wasn’t for organ donation and for my donor, I wouldn’t be here today and for that I am eternally grateful.
“It really is the gift of life.”
There are more than 10,000 people in need of an organ transplant right now and 1,000 of those will die this year.
Statistically you are more likely to need a transplant than to become a donor.
You can sign the organ donor register online at www.lltgl.org.uk
Or you can call 0300 123 23 23.