Rhetoric workshop speech by student Taanu Donne, aged 15

How do you feel about organ donation?

Kidneys. Lungs. A heart. Vital organs that we would be dead without. Many are needed, but few are donated. At this moment in the UK, 6.5 thousand people are waiting for an organ. 6.5 thousand people who are inevitably going to die without a transplant. 6.5 thousand people whose lives could b saved – by your actions.

How does it feel to know that, when you pass on, have ceased to be, have kicked the bucket, you could save 8 other lives? To know that a family member or a  close friend is dying is the worst feeling in the world. You could prevent 8 other families from going through that. This is the way for you to give back, make a difference in the world.

We want to be though of as not harming others, but helping others. Not backwards thinking, but open-minded. Not delaying the world’s progression, but helping it to develop. We need to stop being selfish and ask not what you gain from giving your organs, but what others gain.

Every day an average of 20 people die while waiting for a transplant. No-one would suggest that by keeping your organs you are committing murder. But indirectly, is that what we are doing? On average, we live for around 43 million minutes. Surely us giving up 3 minutes is worth it to give 8 others those 43 million minutes.

On the other hand, some people may argue that organ donation is prohibited by certain religions. In fact, no religion specifically states that organ donation is forbidden, or is wrong – many even encourage it. So what reasons have you got for preventing the recovery of others?

The gift of life is the most precious gift that anybody can give. Do your part now – help others to live.