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Writing to a Transplant Recipient

Connecting to the recipients of your loved one’s gifts
A woman writes a letter at her desk

About

What to know before you write a letter to a transplant recipient

If you’d like to send a letter to the recipient(s) of your loved one’s gifts, HonorBridge can help. You’ll send the letter to us, and we will forward your letter to the appropriate transplant hospital or organ procurement organization (OPO) so it can be delivered to the recipient.

For your safety, we ask that your letter include your first name and your loved one’s first name only. Please don’t include your address or other contact information. We will scan your letter to make sure you haven’t shared any personally identifying information. You may decide later on to exchange personal contact information with your recipient, or even meet in person. For the initial letter, though, we encourage you to keep it general. Contact us if you have questions about this.

For some donor families, reaching out to the recipient of their loved one’s gifts of organ, eye, or tissue can be healing. Some donor families want to write a letter soon after their loss; others wait for many years before they write. There is no right or wrong way to do it, and you can send a letter to your recipient whenever you wish. You can send a card, write a letter, or share a photo. See our guide in English and in Spanish.

If you’d like to write just one letter to everyone who received a gift from your loved one, we will forward a copy to each of the recipients. If you prefer, you may write to specific recipients. You can let us know who the letter is for in your greeting (i.e. “Dear Heart Recipient”) or by noting who the letter is for on the outside of the letter.

If you’d like to submit your letter online, you can use the form below. Once you submit your letter, you’ll get an email confirmation that we’ve received it. If you’d like to mail a handwritten or typed letter, please see the instructions below.

Getting your letter to the right place and waiting for a response can several weeks. Sometimes recipients will need some time to compose their response to you if they are ready to connect. Even if you never hear from them, writing a letter can be a joyful and healing experience for you.

Write a Letter to Recipient

Submit by Mail

If you want to mail your letter, place it in an unsealed, unaddressed envelope. No need to include a stamp on this envelope.

Put your letter in another envelope along with a separate piece of paper with your full name, address, phone number and your loved one’s full name and the date of donation. Then, mail the packet to us:

Family Resource Specialist
HonorBridge
3621 Lyckan Parkway
Durham, North Carolina 27707

Have Questions?

Writing a letter can be a joyful and healing experience

Donor family wearing t-shirts advocating organ donation

Donor families often tell us that reaching out to the person whose life was saved or enhanced by their hero’s gifts was an important part of their healing.  By sharing a little bit about your loved one, you’ll be celebrating the legacy of your loved one with the person whose life was changed as a result of their generosity.