Works of art celebrating the incredible gift of organ donation have been unveiled at St Helier Hospital.
Last year, Non-Executive Director Pat Baskerville tasked students from Wimbledon College of Arts with creating a piece of art to commemorate those who become an organ donor.
There were some fantastic entries from the students, but ‘The Trees’ by Madina Mukhtarova and ‘Gift’ by Yige Yang were declared winners, and their work is already on show in one of the busiest corridors of St Helier.
Pat Baskerville, who is also Chair of the trust’s Organ Donation Committee, explained: “We know how valuable the gift of organ donation is – three people die each day waiting for a transplant, and there are currently 10,000 people on the transplant waiting list. The committee wanted to take the opportunity to promote the importance of organ donation as well as commemorating those who have donated their organs in order to give other people a chance at life.
“We agreed that it would be wonderful to involve the local community, so we approached Wimbledon College of Arts with the idea of running a competition for their students – the therapeutic effect of art, especially in hospitals, is well recognised so this seemed like the ideal partnership. We received a great response, with the standard of work so high that we eventually decided to choose two winners. On behalf of the trust and all those involved in the Organ Donation Committee, I would like to say a huge thank you to Yige and Madina for their hard work. I am delighted that we are going to have their wonderful creations on display at our hospitals.”
Daniel Elkeles, Chief Executive of Epsom and St Helier hospitals, presented Yige and Madina with a certificate and prize of £250 in recognition of their efforts. He said: “How fantastic to have not one, but two wonderful works of art to celebrate the gift of organ donation! Madina’s work has made a big difference to the corridor – what she has created looks amazing, both as a collection and as individual pieces. The animation that Yige developed is incredibly moving and I have no doubt it will inspire lots of people to think about organ donation, and the possibility of becoming donors themselves, in a new way.
“I would like to thank Yige and Madina for their hard work, and Wimbledon College of Arts for their support with this project.”
Simon Betts, Dean of the college, and Rosie Potter, Senior Lecturer, were on hand with some of their colleagues to help celebrate the occasion. Simon said: “Everyone worked as a team in great harmony, and the effort of all involved has produced a fantastic outcome. It has been a brilliant opportunity for the college and for our students. Thank you to Pat and the committee for involving us in this project, and congratulations to both Yige and Madina.”
‘The Trees’ by Madina Mukhtarova can be seen in the corridor on the first floor of C block at St Helier Hospital. The animation by Yige Yang will be displayed on screens around both Epsom and St Helier hospitals, and can also be viewed below.
For more information about organ donation, including how you can join the donation register, please visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk.