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Stephania's story

Receiving a liver transplant has transformed her life

Valasia is familiar with the life-saving benefits that transplantation makes to people's lives. Her youngest daughter, Stephania, was put on the liver transplant waiting list when she was one year old, waiting 20 months before a liver became available.
"As a little girl Stephania was in and out of hospital and was not able to walk, play or laugh like other children. This was difficult to watch and all we wanted was for our little girl to be able to lead a normal life like other children.
"I find it difficult to put into words what it is like being on the transplant waiting list, waiting for the telephone call that would transform Stephania's life. This experience was not something that only affected Stephania; it affected our whole family.
"It was at midnight that we finally received the call. Nothing can prepare you for the call, and as we drove to the hospital we experienced mixed emotions. Crying tears of absolute joy for Stephania who was finally getting a new liver, and tears of grief for someone else's family who had just lost their loved one.
"Today Stephania is thriving and is a perfect example of what organ donation can do. Receiving a liver transplant has transformed her life and we know this is due to the generous act of the donor family who agreed to donate life in a traumatic time.
"I speak as a Greek Orthodox and while I can't speak for everyone, I urge you to help educate our children and communities about organ and tissue donation. Please talk to your loved ones about your donation decision so that more Australian lives, like Stephania's, can be transformed through organ and tissue donation. It's time that people understand that religion is not a barrier to becoming an organ and tissue donor".

Nicky Burton