OTDA Assembly:

A Chance at Life

By: Ally George

On October 23, 2018, Homer-Center held its second annual Organ and Tissue Donation Kickoff Assembly. When asked how she learned about the grant and why she agreed to do the assembly, Student Council Advisor, Mrs. Lisa Adams said, “We learned about the Organ and Tissue donation Awareness grant after I signed up to be a living donor for Mrs. Scott. We thought it would be great to make my living donation and her being on the transplant list - an educational experience for Homer-Center.” Unfortunately, Homer-Center can only receive one more grant to do this assembly.

One of this year’s special guests was Joe and Kellie Santini. Kellie gave birth to her daughter, Quinn, on April 13. When she was born, everything was fine until she turned 2 weeks old. She had to be put on a ventilator and a breathing tube. The doctors and parents thought everything was going to be fine when she have the breathing tube removed at 4 weeks old. But just as everyone thought things were looking up, Quinn had to have a tracheostomy done 2 weeks later. Over the next 5 weeks, she got a more sickly look to her complection. But on July 14, Mr and Mrs. Santini got news that would change their lives forever. The doctors told them that Quinn’s oxygen intake was half of what it needed to be and that she needed a heart transplant. The doctors got the okay from the parents to be on the transplant list. After a while, she finally got a new heart from a perfect donor. Ten days later, she was looking great and was feeling great. So after 131 days, Quinn finally came home but the Santinis life wasn’t ordinary. They still have special actions they have to take so Quinn can be healthy.

There was one other guest that talked about Organ and tissue donation. His name was Jesse Webber. Mr. Webber touched on how to eat and how much you should sleep/exercise. He said that if you avoid highly processed foods, refined sugars, fried food, fatty meals, one hour of exercise per day, and getting exactly 9 ¼ hours of sleep (for teenagers), can cause the chances of you needing a transplant to decrease.

Huge thanks again to Mrs Adams and Mrs.Scott for putting on a great assembly informing us about organ tissue donation! Also a huge thanks to all of our speakers who took time out of their day to tell their story!