Strange Boat - Organ Donation Awareness


Australian-Irish Connection

Organ donor families and recipients from Tasmania and Ireland were brought together in a very unique way during the first Tasmanian Service of Remembrance and Thanksgiving held on May 21st last in Launceston, Tasmania. 

As part of this very moving service, the recording of Strange Boat by Eleanor Shanley and friends was played during an audio/visual presentation, "Time to Remember".  This was a a very special moment for reflection and remembering as Tasmanian landscapes were screened to the inspirational strains of Eleanor singing Strange Boat.

 “It was a very moving and emotional time for many who attended the service”, said Marianne Smith from Launceston General Hospital.  "The playing of Strange Boat", she said, "was a very special and touching moment for the organ donor families present who fully understood the significance of this recording of Strange Boat in memory Éamonn Goggin and all Irish Organ & Tissue Donors".

Marianna explained that this was the first Service of Remembrance and Thanksgiving for organ donor families and transplant recipients held in Tasmania. “Previously” she said, “organ donor families had to travel interstate to attend these services, but as a result of the introduction of an Organ Donation Agency in Tasmania early in 2010, we were in a position to organise our first local service this year”.

This very imaginative service included a candle exchange ceremony as well as a specially commissioned dance by TasDance, a well known local professional Dance Company. The organisers of the event also provided details about Strange Boat Donor Foundation and the National Garden of Commemoration & Thanksgiving which is being planned for Salthill, Galway.

 There may also be another Organ Donation Australian-Irish connection as Strange Boat Donor Foundation is currently talking with the Mayor of Griffith City in New South Wales, Mike Neville, about the possible inclusion of a stone from Australia in the Commemorative Garden. This specially selected stone would represent foreign nationals who donated their organs here in Ireland. 

More details about this to follow.

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