National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week (NOTDAW) raises awareness about the critical need for more donors across the country and encourages Canadians to register their decision and to talk to their loved ones about organ donation.
National Organ and Tissue and Awareness Donation Week takes place the third week of April.
Canadian Blood Services honours NOTDAW through an awareness campaign developed in collaboration with a national Public Education and Awareness Working Group that includes members of each provincial organ donation organization in Canada.
Green ribbons, and green-lit landmarks, pop up across Canada during NOTDAW to honour the donors and donor families who gave the gift of life. They also acknowledge the thousands of patients in need of a transplant and those who have died waiting. Canadians are reminded to register their intent to donate and to discuss their wishes with family and friends. Visit organtissuedonation.ca to find out how to become an organ donor.
Bill C-202, enacting National Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness Week in Canada was passed unanimously by the Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science, and Technology on Feb. 4, 1997. The bill was brought forward by former Liberal Member of Parliament Dan McTeague. The last full week of April was chosen to mark the occasion and to commemorate the death of Stuart Herriott, a toddler killed in a motor vehicle incident in McTeague’s riding of Pickering-Scarborough East. Parents of two-and-a-half-year-old Herriott donated his organs and, in turn, helped to save and improve the lives of four others. McTeague says the intent of the bill was to encourage education and awareness about donation and allow Parliament to take a leadership role in addressing the scarcity of organs and thinking about those who die every year waiting for a transplant.
Green Shirt Day – April 7
The Canada-wide Green Shirt Day honours the legacy of Logan Boulet following the tragic Humboldt Broncos bus crash in Saskatchewan. On April 6, 2018, the tragedy moved and united us as a nation. The details of this tragic event had an unprecedented impact.
Logan’s decision to register as an organ donor, and his family honouring his wishes, saved lives. Logan was able to donate his heart, lungs, liver, both kidneys and both corneas, saving six lives with his organs, and helping two more with his corneas. His generous final act inspired nearly 150,000 donor registrations across Canada shortly thereafter, which became known as the Logan Boulet Effect.