When I was growing up, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory was one of my all time favorite movies. Back in the day there was no streaming, so once a year…and only once a year… this beloved movie was on TV. Finding a golden ticket and winning a chocolate factory was every kid’s dream. As an adult, I still love chocolate…almost as much as I love puppies and wine. So with a similar theme in mind, this Saturday, October 5th, River Bend is holding a Golden Cork event in which one lucky customer will buy a bottle of wine with a golden cork. The prize for purchasing the winning bottle is a three-year Barrel Club membership…kind of a big deal around here. (Check out the events page of our website for details.) But this event is also a fund-raiser, and in addition to giving away a Barrel Club membership, for every bottle of wine sold, River Bend will donate one dollar to the National Kidney Foundation. This is where my headline of “Share Your Spare” will start to make sense.
According to the National Kidney Foundation, there are currently more than 100,000 Americans on the waiting list for a kidney transplant, but only 17,000 people receive one each year. Every day, twelve people die waiting for a kidney.
Signing up to be an organ donor on your driver’s license is one way to help someone who is in need of a transplant. But there is also a Living Donor program where a healthy, living person gives a kidney to someone in need of a transplant. This person often has a family member who needs a kidney, but there are also people who donate to strangers. Living donation has minimal risk to the donor, and the donor incurs no medical costs. A living donation is preferred over a deceased donation because the donor has extensive medical screening prior to donation and a living kidney transplant has a lower risk of rejection by the recipient.
There is a back story here for those who are interested in why our annual October charity event is in support of the National Kidney Foundation. An extended family member of my husband Al is currently on the waiting list for a kidney. Having had two transplants in the past, he will have a difficult time finding a donor match and a living donor is definitely preferred. The average wait for a kidney is several years, and in that time, he will need dialysis if a donor is not found. He will, in fact, need dialysis soon. Among a number of others, Al and I have started the medical screening to see if one of us could be his living kidney donor. We already know we each have the correct blood type, but there is extensive testing yet to be done. We are hopeful that one of us…or one of the others in the group currently being screened…can be a living donor match and share our spare.
If you are interested in learning more about living kidney donation, you can check out the National Kidney Foundation at www.kidney.org. To offer your support…and have the chance to win an awesome prize…stop out to River Bend this Saturday, October 5th for our Golden Cork event in support of the National Kidney Foundation.
Until next time...Cheers!