November is National Donor Sabbath Month

National Donor Sabbath, observed November 13th-15th, is an annual faith-based celebration of the lifesaving gift of organ, eye and tissue donation.

Lions Eye Bank for Long Island and other organizations in the New York Metropolitan area work closely with communities of faith to bring the message of donation to their congregations. During this holiday season, Lions Eye Bank for Long Island not only gives thanks to those who have donated organs and tissue, but also encourages others to consider the greatest gift of all this season — the gift of life made possible by registering as a donor.

There are unfortunately many misconceptions about organ, eye and tissue donation according to Eye Bank staff. Most of the major religions consider donation the highest form of charity. The Donor Sabbath opens up the conversation about this and helps to allay any concerns.

As you sit down with your families this Season of Giving, we encourage you to discuss donation with your loved ones and hope that in this time of gratitude that you will consider registering to be an organ, eye and tissue donor.

This simple act could save the life of one of the more than 115,000 Americans — including more than 8000— currently waiting for organ, eye and tissue transplants in our community.

In an effort to foster discussion about this issue, The Lions Eye Bank hosted a forum with local faith leaders at the North Shore Hospital-Mahasset Campus (Kaufman Board Room) on Nov 13th, 2015. It was attended by local community leaders that represented jewish, islamic, christian (catholic and baptist), and muslim faiths. The panel was lead by Rev. Jon Overvald, Directory of System Champlaincy  at North Shore -LIJ.