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Give the Gift of Life

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 As we celebrate and feast with loved ones over the holidays, many of us wish to give back and help others.  Often, we struggle to find the time and the means to do so.  However, this Thanksgiving, there is something everyone can do that costs nothing, takes less than a minute, and gives hope to thousands of children, adults, and their families, in need. 

Children like Braxton Upthegrove from Fayette County.  Braxton received his first kidney transplant from his father at 6 years old.  Now 16, his kidney is weakening.  He is on dialysis for 10 hours every night.  He needs another transplant, and now his family must depend on the generosity of others.  

Braxton is one of over 900 children and adults in Kentucky waiting for a life-saving transplant.  In the nation 120,000 patients wait.  Each day 18 people die waiting for their Gift of Life.  If you ‘hate the wait’ like we do, please consider joining the Kentucky Organ Donor Registry.

As your Circuit Court Clerk, I’ve been involved with our Trust For Life.  My staff and I ask every person obtaining a license or ID if they would like to donate $1 to raise awareness about this life-saving mission.  Even more importantly, we ask everyone to join the Kentucky Organ Donor Registry.  It only takes a moment to say yes.  We feel honored to give everyone the opportunity to be hope and save lives - in a quick and simple way - every day.

Thanks to the kindness of this community and the dedication of my hardworking staff, many of you have already joined the Registry over the years.  In 2013, the Bullitt County Circuit Court Clerks’ Office received the 2013 President’s Award recognizing us for tremendous enhancement of the Kentucky Organ Donation Awareness Program.  However, the need is still there.  Only 40% of Kentuckians are registered donors.  Everyone, regardless of medical history, can join the Registry to give hope to those waiting today.  It’s easy.  Join online www.donatelifeky.org or call 1-866-945-5433.  Do you have questions about organ donation?  Talk to Shelley at the KY Circuit Clerks’ Trust For Life.

Remember, “No act of kindness, however small, is ever wasted” (Aesop).  Let the ‘giving spirit’ reach every corner of our county, soothing souls of families we may never know.  Your “YES” helps families like Braxton’s - and all people in need of a transplant.  

Wishing everyone a blessed holiday season!

Paulita A. Keith

Bullitt Circuit Clerk