With a whopping 23,181 pledges for organ donation, Rotary Club of Pune Gandhi Bhavan, D 3131, has set a new Guinness Record for the ‘maximum number of people to sign up online for organ donation in eight hours’. People from 950 cities across the country signed up for the cause.
“The recent loss of a close relative due to kidney failure triggered this initiative in me,” says the Club President Amruta Deogaonkar.
A website, www.giftlife.co.in was created as a platform for the organ pledge activity and the Sahyadri Hospital in Pune was the healthcare partner. Aarti Gokhale, the Chief Coordinator of Zonal Transplant Coordination Centre, provided the guidance. Promotions were done through social and print media. DG Shailesh Palekar promoted the cause through a press conference which was tele-cast on the local channels and aired on radio channels. Over 300 volunteers manned the special kiosks set up in 40 companies and institutions in the city for people to register their pledge.
The Rotarians had to face challenges such as the Maharashtra State bundh and network failure in certain areas, but “despite all that I was thrilled to hold the Guinness Certificate at the end of the day,” beams Amruta. Dr Vimal Kumar Bhandari, Director of the National Organ and Tissue Transplant Organisation, was the Guinness World Records Adjudicator.
Pledges were received for donation of eyes, kidneys, heart, lungs, liver and pancreas. There were four donors beyond 100 years, the highest being a 110-year-old, says Amruta.