Canadian Transplant Association - L'association Canadienne des Greffés
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January 7, 2014

Kayla Baker - Young Organ Donor Advocate Legacy Will Live On!

Dear CTA Transplant Community, Organ and Tissue Donation Awareness is one of our goals and I am very proud to have known a very special person, Kayla Baker, from Cambridge, Ontario who took that goal very seriously and made it her personal goal. Kayla was 12 when I met her and she was on the wait list for a double lung transplant. Even though she was what many people thought was young, this little lady was an "old Soul"! She understood the seriousness of the Donor shortage and did not lament. No, instead she buckled down and put her efforts to raising those rates. Kayla and her mom, Susan, brought awareness to not only to their Cambridge community but to Ontarians. She presented to her Elementary and Secondary Schools. She put together and supported information booths. But Kayla didn’t stop there. In the Fall of 2012 she and her Mom began work on the first Run a Lung 5km Race to raise awareness for Organ and Tissue Donation and to raise money to support the acquisition of equipment for The Hospital for Sick Children (Sick Kids). Her community rallied behind her and it literally turned the City of Cambridge GREEN!!! Lampposts, porches, store fronts – all green! School went green. This endeavor stimulated other actions and events – University Avenue and Sick Kids trees and posts were recipients of the “Green Ribbons”. There were rallies and walks to increase donorship. All of this covered by the media, bringing further awareness to Ontarians! Kayla did receive a lung in April 2013. Unfortunately, Kayla experienced many complications and ultimately Cancer. She didn’t stop her awareness campaign even during her continuous stay at Sick Kids. But, Kayla passed away on January 1st, 2014 surrounding by family and close friends. In recognition how she supported our goal to raise Organ and Tissue donation awareness we would like to present here on the website some of the highlights of Kayla’s Campaign!!! God bless you Kayla. Carol A. Dubeau Note: The City of Cambridge Go Green for Kayla Baker campaign was awarded the Victor Davis Memorial Award, an Ontario Award given to an individual or company who did their part in promoting organ donor awareness. It was my honour to present this award, along with Victor’s Dad Mel Davis to the City of Cambridge Mayor Craig, Kayla’s mom, Susan Tremblett and the members of the local organ donation awareness group and RunaLung Committee last November. Kayla has left behind a legacy that many of us will carry on in her memory. She will not be forgotten. Sandra Holdsworth, Ontario Director