A big celebration of life is taking place this week in San Diego. People from around the United States have gathered at the San Diego Convention Center for the 2022 Transplant Games!
Organ transplant recipients and living donors are participating in a variety of fun sports competitions. As you can see in the above photograph, cycling 5 km and 20 km road races along Harbor Drive were part of today’s activities!
Through this Wednesday, the public is welcome to visit the Transplant Games Village and Expo, located in Exhibit Halls A and B at the convention center. There you can watch some indoor competitions, such as basketball and table tennis. For a schedule of events, click here.
Many organizations that help those in the transplant community are also present.
I met authors who’ve written books describing the whole transplant process, making it all easier to understand. Other creators have produced videos featuring loved ones who were helped, or who helped to save a life by making an organ donation.
I saw organizations that create online community, gather inspirational stories, or offer practical guidance and mental health services. Medical providers and pharmaceutical companies also had tables. All of these smiling people were there to offer critical help.
Near the entrance to the Transplant Games Village and Expo, several beautiful quilts remembered loved one.
Everywhere I turned, I observed people full of happiness, gratitude and hope, and a strengthened love of life.
I came away feeling inspired.
Smiles from The Mended Hearts. The non-profit works to inspire hope and improve the quality of life of heart patients and their families through ongoing peer-to-peer support, education, and advocacy.
Robert Horsey has written the book Gifted and is producing a video concerning the complex topic of organ donation. According to his website: Even the largest football stadium in the U.S. could not fit the number of people on the national transplant waiting list.
Many transplant stories pinned to a board, courtesy Balboa Nephrology and Evergreen Nephrology.
Author Brenda Cortez is a living kidney donor. She has written a series of Howl the Owl books making transplant and medical procedures less scary for kids.
The Joe 238 documentary celebrates the decision to donate. According to the website: Through multiple stories of grief and recovery, we learn about healthy grieving, what it means to be a donor family and plant the seed for an honest conversation about organ donation every family needs to have.