From: Dora Pelley
It is with great humbleness of heart that I reach out to you, although this time it’s not to write about my country of Nicaragua, as I have done for many months, but to ask for the gift of life for our daughter, Olivia Hope.
Three years ago on June 15, 2016, Olivia received a kidney from a generous donor of San Francisco, Calif., through the Kidney Pair Exchange Program coordinated between the U of M Fairview Hospital and the University of San Francisco hospital. My brother-in-law who wanted to give this gift to Olivia, was not a match, so by giving his kidney to someone else, Olivia received one from an anonymous donor in San Francisco. We have been so thankful and grateful for this precious gift that our daughter received three years ago, but now we must again search for generous hearts willing to test for a match and donate in the hope of once again finding a kidney for Olivia.
This past February, Olivia unexpectedly went through an episode of rejection. The University of Minnesota did everything to save the kidney, applying the anti-rejection protocols that they are experts at implementing. The hope has been to see the kidney function return to normal; however, four months later, although we all continue to pray and hope the function returns, so far this has not happened and Olivia’s kidney has suffered damaged. The kidney function is stable, but not normal. We do not know at this time how long it will sustain Olivia and, with her present kidney function, she is struggling to live her life fully and be able to work.
Olivia had her first transplant at the age of 11 and did four months of dialysis before receiving a kidney from her father. For her second kidney, she waited 18 months, doing dialysis three times a week, until receiving a kidney. Dialysis was very hard on Olivia; at the end, her body was not tolerating it well and her blood pressures were very high. We were so blessed that a kidney was found before her life was lost. Because of an extended period of dialysis last time and how sick Olivia became, we as a family have decided to this time take a proactive approach and appeal to donors early who may be willing to give this gift to her. It is our hope to find a matching donor and prepare for transplant before having to resort to dialysis.
You can call the University of Minnesota Solid Transplant Donor number at 612-625-5115, option one, if you are interested in testing and giving Olivia the gift of life. Nowadays, through the kidney exchange program, even if you cannot directly donate to Olivia, you can offer that gift to someone else needing a kidney and the right candidate or perfect match can donate to Olivia. This exchange is allowing so many more people to receive these precious gifts faster than ever before, saving precious lives.
Olivia is 22 years old. Being born with spina bifida and losing her original kidneys early in life due to mismanagement of her bladder, she has had 12 major operations and countless more minor ones in her short life. She is a strong human being who lives life with zeal and knows the value of living each day as if it was her last. We, as her parents, have been her caretakers and advocates for all these 22 years and want you to know that offering the gift of life to Olivia would be forever remembered in our hearts and appreciated by our family.
Please feel free to call us at our home number 608-687-9100 or call the University of Minnesota - Solid Transplant Donor with any questions that you may have about donating a kidney and what it all entails. The donor’s evaluations, including a complete physical, are covered fully, as well as all expenses when donating. Please know that this decision should be made prayerfully and with complete assurance that this is something you want and must do for someone else.
Thank you for considering donating. May God bless you as you prayerfully and consciously consider offering the gift of life to Olivia Hope.