Donate Life America Announces Winners of 2020 Pinnacle Awards

RICHMOND, VA, December 16, 2020 – Each year, Donate Life America (DLA) recognizes successful Donate Life State Team and partner programs that increase donation education and donor registrations. Identifying and sharing successful programs with the Donate Life Community is key to increasing donor registration and saving more lives through donation and transplantation.

Programs submitted for DLA Pinnacle Awards are peer reviewed for clear goals and objectives, implementation, innovation and creativity, donor registration and positive cultural change results, return on investment/effort, and the incorporation of the Donate Life symbol – the national symbol for the cause of donation.

DLA is excited to share the 2020 DLA Pinnacle Award winners:

DMV Program – Wyoming Driver Services Digital Training, Donor Alliance
Youth Education Program – Transplantation Science Traveling Trunk, Donor Alliance
Miscellaneous Program – Donate Life Flag Funeral Home Program, LifeLink of Georgia
Event – Share Your Heart Comfort Blanket Party, Donate Life Coalition of Michigan and Michigan Donor Family Council
Fundraising Program – “Planting Seeds for Life” Fundraising Campaign, Donate Life Florida
Hospital/Healthcare Program – Blue, Green and Beyond, Mass General Transplant Center and New England Donor Services
Living Donation Program – Erase the Wait Mentorship Program, Donate Life Northwest
Media Campaign – Let’s Talk Multicultural Campaign, Gift of Life Michigan
National Donate Life Month Outreach – LifeLink Rocks Donate Life, LifeLink of Georgia

In addition to the nine program category awards, DLA presents five additional Pinnacle Awards to recognize the best overall program, as well as those outstanding in innovation, multicultural community outreach, remixing a standard practice into something successfully reimagined, and effective use of resources, effort and investment.

Platinum – Wyoming Driver Services Digital Training, Donor Alliance
Innovation Award – Transplantation Science Traveling Trunk, Donor Alliance
Best Multicultural Program – A Matter of Faith, Gift of Life Michigan
Best Remix – Hope Glows, Nevada Donor Network
Best ROI – Donate Life Flag Funeral Home Program, LifeLink of Georgia

Congratulations to the 2020 DLA Pinnacle Award winners! Thank you for leading the Donate Life Community in reaching the public and engaging our partners in education about the cause of donation and inspiring more individuals to register their lifesaving decision to be an organ, eye and tissue donor.

The winning programs were recognized at the September 2020 DLA Annual Conference.

Brief descriptions of all 2020 DLA Pinnacle Award winning programs are included below.

Platinum Award & DMV Program
Wyoming Driver Services Digital Training, Donor Alliance

Donor Alliance collaborated with Wyoming Driver Services to create a digital training module that was uploaded into the Driver Services’ learning management system. The 15-minute training module covers topics such as how the donor registry works, what the donation process is, local and national statistics and the facts about donation. The training allowed for the direct education of front-line employees for the first time ever in Wyoming. The goal was for all employees to complete the training module annually, as well as with new employee training, with a 90% average of correct answers on the survey at the end of the training.

Innovation Award & Youth Education Program
Transplantation Science Traveling Trunk, Donor Alliance

After identifying a need to reach more schools in rural areas, Donor Alliance created a Traveling Trunk for the long-established Transplantation Science program. The Trunk includes all of the materials needed to teach the Transplantation Science class and is shipped to teachers with fewer than 50 students in schools located more than 100 miles away from the four Donor Alliance offices. The teacher has one week to use the materials in the Trunk to teach the class and then has the opportunity to schedule a video conference with a Transplantation Science Educator to answer students’ questions.

Best Multicultural Program
A Matter of Faith, Gift of Life Michigan

The goal of “A Matter of Faith” video is to engage the interfaith community to address the question of whether different faith traditions support the idea of organ, eye and tissue donation and encourage minority communities to learn about the need to join the Michigan Organ Donor Registry. This video highlights seven faith traditions – Baptist, Buddhist, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Sikh – in a way that interweaves the common experiences of humanity. It was created in collaboration with the Interfaith Leadership Council of Metropolitan Detroit, a faith-based civic organization that advocates for religious freedom and educational and civic initiatives.

Best Remix Award
Hope Glows, Nevada Donor Network

Hope Glows isn’t your average fun run/walk. Not only does it share the hope donation brings, but Nevada Donor Network represents it by “glowing” when the sun goes down. Competing against many other charity walks/runs made Nevada Donor Network (NVDN) feel like it wasn’t getting anywhere with its efforts. In 2018, the NVDN team decided to completely switch things up. This included changing the start time from 10:00am to 6:00pm and bringing food trucks, community partners, fireworks and more. Why does NVDN and the community walk? For the over 600 Nevadans waiting for their second chance and the heroic donors who make life possible.

Best ROI Award & Miscellaneous Program
Donate Life Flag Funeral Home Program, LifeLink of Georgia

New ideas and collaborations are key components for success in the ever changing and challenging world of organ, eye and tissue donation. With a common goal of educating the public and honoring donors who have given the gift of life, LifeLink of Georgia and a Georgia-based funeral home partner created The Donate Life Flag program in 2016. The Donate Life Flag program, which is now implemented in multiple funeral homes across the state, encourages funeral home partners to offer donor families recognition of the gift of life provided by their loved one by flying a Donate Life flag during funeral services.

Event Program
Share Your Heart – Comfort Blanket Party, Donate Life Coalition of Michigan and Michigan Donor Family Council

On February 14, 2019, Donate Life Coalition of Michigan partnered with the Michigan Donor Family Council for the inaugural Share Your Heart – Comfort Blanket Party. This event engaged a multicultural community and provided much needed comfort to donor families. Comfort blankets are given to new organ donor families at the time of a loved one’s passing and become a treasured keepsake for the family. Our event brought together recipients, donor families, transplant center and organ procurement organization (OPO) representatives, supportive businesses/organizations and interested individuals who shared their stories while assembling no-sew fleece blankets to provide comfort to families whose loved ones saved others.

Fundraising Program
“Planting Seeds for Life” Fundraising Campaign, Donate Life Florida

The 2019 National Donate Life Month “Planting Seeds for Life” fundraising campaign took place in Florida’s driver license offices. Each April, the Donate Life Florida Driver License Outreach committee holds contests among the offices for the leaders in fundraising and donor designation rates. For “Planting Seeds for Life,” the committee created blue and green leaf-shaped tear-off notepads. Employees used these leaves when asking customers for contributions. Employees were also instructed to utilize the leaves in creating “trees” upon the office walls, thus further encouraging participation in fundraising and opening conversations about Donate Life Florida with customers.

Hospital/Healthcare Program
Blue, Green and Beyond, Massachusetts General Transplant Center and New England Donor Services

In 2019, Massachusetts General revitalized its Donate Life Month effort by taking a different approach to the national awareness month through the use new tools, like Facebook Live, to connect with the community. Mass General broadened its focus to engage a larger audience within the hospital and transplant center and developed programming to reach new people. The Transplant Center at Massachusetts General Hospital is the largest in New England and is made up of leading specialists in every area.

Living Donation Program
Erase the Wait Mentorship Program, Donate Life Northwest

The Erase the Wait (ETW) Mentorship program empowers End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) patients who are waitlisted for a kidney to understand, educate about, and encourage living kidney donation through a workshop series and support from trained peer mentors. Mentors are living kidney donors or recipients of a kidney from a living donor.

Media Campaign
Let’s Talk Multicultural Campaign, Gift of Life Michigan

The “Let’s Talk” multicultural outreach campaign is a coordinated effort involving social media, influencers, video, and public events to break down barriers that keep multicultural communities from saying yes to donation. It specifically focuses on the large African-American, Arab-American and Latinx communities in Michigan.

National Donate Life Month Outreach
LifeLink Rocks Donate Life, LifeLink of Georgia

Painting rocks to squirrel away for others to find as a fun surprise is a unique outdoor treasure hunt and cultural phenomenon practiced across the U.S. The colorful, painted rocks found in public spaces brighten the day of the “finder” who shares the discovery on social media and hides the rock in another location. During Donate Life Month 2019, LifeLink of Georgia created a LifeLink Rocks Donate Life campaign across the state. It began with encouraging volunteers to decorate and hide rocks in their communities, but blossomed into something much bigger.

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About Donate Life America

Donate Life America (DLA) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization leading its national partners and Donate Life State Teams to increase the number of donated organs, eyes and tissues available to save and heal lives. DLA manages and promotes Donate Life℠, the national brand for the cause of donation; motivates the public to register as organ, eye and tissue donors; provides education about living donation; manages the National Donate Life Registry at RegisterMe.org; and develops and executes effective multi-media campaigns to promote donation.

Contact:
Hilary Czarda
Donate Life America
hczarda@donatelife.net
804.377.3584