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Center for Organ Recovery & Education (CORE) Supports National Minority Donor Awareness Week at Community Events

– Annual Observance Addresses Need for Organ, Tissue & Cornea Donation in Minority Communities–

Pittsburgh, July 31, 2014 – The Center for Organ Recovery & Education (CORE), a federally designated not-for-profit organ procurement organization (OPO) serving Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and parts of New York, will participate in National Minority Donor Awareness Week, August 1-7, 2014.  More than half of the national transplant waiting list is made up of multicultural populations due to higher incidences of diabetes, hypertension and kidney disease. The annual observance is designed to increase awareness of the need for organ, tissue and cornea donation in minority communities.

CORE will team with organizations committed to addressing the donor shortage and encourage a healthy lifestyle. This year’s theme, “Love Yourself, and Take Care of Yourself,” emphasizes more exercise, more vegetables, less red meat, no smoking, and keeping blood pressure in check to help prevent the need for transplants.

“Of the 122,000 individuals currently waiting for a transplant, 57 percent are members of a minority group,” said Susan Stuart, president and CEO of CORE. “This startling statistic shows the urgent need for donation and education. One donor can make a difference to so many lives. Our CORE representatives and donor families and volunteers are committed to getting the word out and will provide information at events across our service area,” she added.

August 1-3, CORE will participate in Multifest 2014 in Charleston, WV. Celebrating 25 years of diversity, the highly anticipated event unites cultures and ethnic communities through art, music, education, cultural programs and cuisine.

August 2 in Pittsburgh, CORE will be on hand for the Latino Picnic at the Vietnam Veterans Pavilion in Schenley Park, as well as at the New Light Temple Baptist Church’s “Kings of the Hill” cook-off competition at the Ross Shop & Save at 1850 Centre Avenue.

The Mayors of the City of Pittsburgh and City of Erie, Chief Executive of the County of Allegheny, and Governor of the State of West Virginia have also declared August 1 through 7, 2014 “Minority Donor Awareness Week,” by issuing proclamations that acknowledge the need and importance of organ and tissue donation amongst all minority communities.  Consider these statistics:

  • There are more than 38,000 African Americans currently waiting for a life-saving organ transplant in the U.S.
  • African Americans and other minorities are three times more likely to suffer from end-stage renal disease than Caucasians.
  • African Americans represent the highest percentage of multicultural patients in need of a transplant.
  • Hispanic Americans comprise 12.5 percent of the U.S. population, yet they make up 18 percent of the candidates currently waiting for organ transplants.

For every person who donates their organs, tissues and corneas, up to 50 lives can be saved or dramatically improved.  Yet, less than 30,000 people receive transplants each year and 20 people die each day while waiting for one.  “Let’s end the wait.”

For more information about CORE, visit www.core.org or call 1-800-DONORS-7.

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