Organ Donation

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Specific Purpose: To persuade my audience to donate their organs and tissues when they die and to act upon their decision to donate.

Thesis Statement: The need is constantly growing for organ donors and it is very simple to be an organ donor when you die.


A. Attention material/Credibility Material: How do you feel when you have to wait for something you really, really want? What if it was something you couldn’t live without? Well, my cousin was five years old when he found out he needed a new kidney. He went on the organ waiting list right away. He was called twice during a six month span that they had a kidney available only to find out that the kidney wasn’t a good match. He had to wait again. The third time was a charm. A small adult was in an accident and his kidney was a good match. This story had a happy ending but so many do not.

B. Tie to the audience: One of the people on the waiting list for an organ transplant might be someone you know. C. Thesis and Preview: Today I’d like to talk to you about first, the need for organ donors in our area, second, how you can become an organ donor after you die, and finally, how your family and organ donor recipients benefit from you donation.

[Transition into body of speech]: I’ll begin by telling you about the need for organ donors.


A. People around the world but also right here in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois, need organ transplants and they need our help.

1. The problem is that there is a lack of organs and organ donors who make organ transplantation possible.

a. The need is many organs and tissues such as the heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, pancreas, corneas, bone, skin, heart valves, and blood vessels(Iowa Statewide Organ Procurement Organization undated brochure).

b. A new name is added to the national waiting list every 16 minutes. That means that 3 people will be added to the list during the time we are in class today.

1) The problem is that 10 people will die each day waiting for an organ transplant (LifeSource: Questions and Answers). 2) The reason is that are only on the average 5,000 donors nationally per year (LifeSource: Statistics).

c. You can choose to donate any needed organs or you can specify which organs or tissues you wish to donate.

2.. Organ donation is very important.

a. The following poem by Robert Test entitled, "To Remember Me," shows the importance of organ donation. "Give my sight to the man who has never seen a sunrise, a baby’s face or love in the eyes of a woman. Give my heart to a person whose heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain… Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk…Take my cells, if necessary, and let them grow so that, someday, a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her window (South Dakota Lions Eye Bank, undated brochure).

b. Not only is this a problem nationally but also it is a big problem right here at home in the Midwest.

1) Nationally, there are over 62,000 people waiting as of October 7, 1998. As of October 7, 1998, there are 1,422 people from Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and part of Wisconsin that are on the organ waiting list (LifeSource: Statistics).

2) The sad part is that there have only been 104 donors in the Midwest so far from January 1998 through August 1998 (LifeSource: Newsnotes).

[Transition: I’m sure that you can see the need for people like you to donate your organs. The majority of this class has already said they would like to donate their organs when they die. But you might be asking, well, how can I make sure my organs are donated after I die?...
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