Campaign aims to register 20 million organ donors

RICHMOND, VA: Donate Life America, an organization promoting organ, eye, and tissue donation, launched the "20 Million in 2012" effort with the goal of drastically increasing the number of consumers on state donor registries.

RICHMOND, VA: Donate Life America, an organization promoting organ, eye, and tissue donation, launched the “20 Million in 2012” effort on Monday with the goal of drastically increasing the number of consumers on state donor registries.  

The campaign features patients whose lives have been changed for the better due to life-saving donations. Each week, the organization will share new stories via press releases and social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. The first featured story is that of Jessica Melore, a 30-year-old who received a heart transplant at 16.  

“Going viral is what we're trying to do,” said Aisha Huertas, communications and new media supervisor at Donate Life America. “We're hoping the social medial aspect will make [the campaign] grow by getting our followers to be our biggest advocates and getting the message out there.”

The effort specifically targets two groups: 18-year-olds who did not register as donors when they received driver's licenses and consumers over 50 years of age.

“[People over 50] tend to think they are too old or can't donate because they may have a disease like diabetes. As a result, they tend to rule themselves out,” Huertas said. "Younger people tend to be a little more cynical and think, ‘Why should I think about dying?'”

The group developed the campaign in-house. Huertas declined to disclose the initiative's budget.

In addition to using social media, the organization plans to promote organ donation through a flash mob and a virtual fashion show.

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