RICHMOND, Va., July 7, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Association for Multicultural Affairs in Transplantation (AMAT) and Donate Life America (DLA) are joining forces to launch "Donate Life ECHO," a new national observance designed to reach multicultural communities. ECHO, which stands for: Every Community Has Opportunity, is being launched to bolster engagement with African American, Asian/Pacific Islander, Latino, and other multicultural communities.
The new observance, ECHO, has two objectives: one is to focus on the power of sharing one's personal decision to register as an organ, eye and tissue donor with members of one's community; the second is to encourage registered donors to ask members of their personal networks and extended communities to register as donors. Through the ECHO concept of reiteration and repetition—with people sharing the life-affirming message of donation within their community—more lives will be saved and healed.
"This strategic initiative is about empowering individuals to echo the message of donation throughout their respective communities, while building momentum together," said Remonia Chapman, president of AMAT. "We are delighted to collaborate with DLA for this groundbreaking effort to equip people from all backgrounds with a host of culturally relevant tools and resources that have been designed to foster meaningful conversations and personal testimonies about the vitally important health topic of organ, eye and tissue donation and transplantation."
The two-week observance will be held during the second and third full weeks in July. This year's inaugural observance will be held July 12 – July 25. ECHO is not intended to replace current programs and commemorations; rather, it offers a new mid-year opportunity with tremendous social media and community potential. As nearly 60 percent of the current U.S. transplant waiting list is comprised of ethnically diverse patients, the need for increased education efforts and new strategic approaches is a critical step toward increasing the number of registered donors in multicultural communities.
David Fleming, DLA President and CEO, added: "DLA is excited to be working with AMAT on this new observance, which has the potential to reach specific communities in an innovative way. It is no coincidence that the words 'community' and 'opportunity' both include the word 'unity,' as together, we can create lifesaving change. This transformative observance highlights that great good that can come from sharing the importance of registering as a donor with our family, friends and communities."
The new observance will be translated into multiple languages, including Spanish. Done Vida ECO, which stands for Esperanza, Comunidad y Oportunidad, translates to "hope," "community," and "opportunity." Together, AMAT and DLA will offer a Donate Life ECHO digital toolkit that will include: social media banners, graphics, talking points, and an array of resources that can be customized for specific audiences. To learn more, visit: www.amat1.org/programs/echo and www.DonateLife.net/echo.
About the Association for Multicultural Affairs in Transplantation (AMAT)
AMAT was established in 1992 to address the increasing need for organ and tissue donors in the multicultural communities while simultaneously offering support, shared expertise and professional development opportunities for its members as they save and heal lives. AMAT is a self-sustaining, self-governed organization operating solely on voluntary contributions from individuals, corporations, and other affiliated organizations. For more information, visit: www.AMAT1.org.
About Donate Life America (DLA)
Donate Life America is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit alliance of national organizations and Donate Life State Teams across the United States committed to saving and healing lives through increased organ, eye and tissue donation. Donate Life America, with the help of its corporate partners, is dedicated to spreading the word about the importance of being a registered donor so that others may live. For more information, visit: www.DonateLife.net.
CONTACT: Ayanna Anderson, Public Relations Chair, AMAT, firstname.lastname@example.org, (510) 251.7003Source: Donate Life America