INTERNATIONAL ORGAN DONATION AWARENESS - AUSTRALIA
Malvern East family ride for great cause
THIS family circle is as big as a velodrome.
Malvern East’s Margaret Bland and family are organising their fourth annual David Bland Ride for Life.
The Blands lost 14-year-old David to cerebral oedema (swelling of the brain) in 2006.
The keen cyclist and musician became suddenly ill and was pronounced brain dead a day later.
The Blands chose to donate his organs to five recipients as one of only four Victorian child donors that year.
The Ride for Life, which has attracted up to 150 riders each year, not only celebrates his memory but gets families talking about organ donation, Mrs Bland said.
“That’s one of the biggest reasons for having the ride, to remember David and to get information out there,” she said. “If all we are doing is helping families talk about it, then that in itself is so important.”
Money raised from the ride will go to Donate Life, a national group that educates health staff and the community about organ donation.
Donate Life is presently compiling a library of personal stories from donor families like the Blands.
The 17km ride is on Sunday, October 24, from 2pm at the Hawthorn Velodrome on Gardiner’s Creek.
It then follows the Gardiner’s Creek and Yarra bike paths to the Federation Bells in Birrarung Marr.
A picnic barbecue will be held from 4pm on return to the velodrome.