Freeman Health System holds employee cookoff to raise money for Organ Donor Council

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Every ten minutes a new name is added to an organ donor list. Today, one local hospital is raising awareness of the life saving possibilities of donating an organ.

Freeman Health System held a employee-wide themed cookoff to help raise money for Freeman’s Donor Council. Several employees brought out their best dishes, and even more showed up to get a good lunch. All to help the cause of organ donation awareness — which, for one employee, hits close to home.

“My kidneys failed when I was 16,” says Laura Wolfshorndl, donor recipient.

Laura Wolfshorndl knows all too well the process of organ donation.

“My dad and my mom both tested to be a donor. My dad donated his kidney. It’s lasted 25 years which is pretty amazing,” says Laura Wolfshorndl.

It was a life saving gift – one that she might need again. Laura’s been told her donated kidney won’t last forever.

“They said that the average lifespan of a transplanted kidney is 30 years,” says Wolfshorndl.

That need for donors is one that never ends. Every ten minutes a new name is added to an organ donation list. But with more than 114 thousand patients already on the list, the wait can be long.

“This provides hope that something good can come out of something so tragic,” says Roxanna Estes, Organ Donor Council.

The Organ Donor Council at Freeman works to bring awareness and comfort to families going through the organ donation process. That includes hosting their annual Donor Council Cookoff to raise money for people who have given or are recipients of a donated organ.

“Donation is the gift of life and we just want to let everyone know we are out there to help,” says Roxanna Estes.

“It gives them hope of not only can they get a transplant, but it can be a long lasting solution,” says Laura Wolfshorndl.

Something Laura Wolfshorndl and her friends and family are thankful for every day.

“I can’t imagine her not being there. If she had not received that gift of life she would not be our gift,” says Roxanna Estes.

Laura shared with me the constraints dialysis had on her life, but is grateful for the freedom her donated kidney gives her.

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