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Mandy Montgomery blog post

Celebrating During Quarantine

by Mandy Montgomery Anniversaries, holidays, and celebrations are never easy…especially when you’re in quarantine. I never thought in a million years that we would be sharing our favorite holiday virtually. But alas, we did. Through quarantine, our closest family members weren’t able to see each other. We all hunkered down and took shelter in place as instructed. After all, our parents and grandparents both struggle from being in the high-risk Read More »

Crozier family

A Story of Hope during the Pandemic

A life changer. That’s how Adam Crozier describes the phone call that came more than six years after joining the waiting list for a kidney. It was a call he’d convinced himself was never coming. “My wife and I both, independently, made the mental decision that this is never going to happen, so we’re just not going to worry about it. We’ll prepare for it, and we’ll be ready for Read More »

Kevin Sheets

This Mother’s Day: Honoring a Mother’s Giving Spirit

Unexpected. That’s how Kevin Sheets describes the loss of Michelle, a wife and mother of two who gave the gift of life to help others. If there was one light in the darkness, it’s that Kevin knew Michelle felt strongly about becoming an organ and tissue donor. “Since our boys were born, we decided we would always be donors. Once your soul is out of your body, if there is Read More »

Spring and Grief

Spring and Grief

It is spring and as much as I want it to be warm and lively, it brings the month of May and my dread for preparing myself for my daughter’s 31st birthday and the 3rd anniversary of her death. Spring and grief just don’t seem to fit in the same sentence together, but I find myself staying strong in knowing that my daughter’s life wasn’t in vain.  Her donation of Read More »

Mothers Day

Mother’s Day: A message from one donor mother to another

Being a mother is the best! Notice I didn’t say easy, and I didn’t say it always works out the way you had planned. Justin was and always will be my first-born son. He is the one that received all of the “big” gifts first – from a battery operated truck to laptops to automobiles, and until Kyle was born, all of the attention. Both of my sons continue to Read More »

Heart in Hands

The Simplicity of Caring for Each Other

By Jamie Rivas, Director, Family and Donor Services As a clinical social worker, there have been these moments throughout my career in which I realize that the greatest thing we can do in our field is reach out and help one another. By simply offering assistance to others, together we can make a difference in all communities. Now is exactly one of those times. To be a social worker in the world of healthcare Read More »

Heart and Vase

Being a Social Worker in the Organ and Tissue Donation Community

By Laura Weiger, Manager, Family Services Being a social worker, to me, means being an advocate, an educator, a support and a guide. Within our mission at Indiana Donor Network specifically, it means meeting people in their times of crisis and grief and understanding that, while we can not change this reality for them, we can be present with them and support them through it. It also means that, while Read More »

hands cradling growing seedling

You Are Not Alone

By Stephanie Guagliardo, Aftercare Support Coordinator I have recently started to pursue my Master’s degree in Social Work. I hope that this degree will help me understand different perspectives and challenges, as grief is one of the many things that donor families may be dealing with. For instance, a donor family may not only be grieving the loss of a spouse but may also now be a single parent. Grief Read More »

Talking to Kids About Organ Donation

Talking to Kids About Organ Donation

Written by Mandy Montgomery, donor family advocate How do you tell a child that someone they loved passed away? How do you answer all of their questions? How do you make light of tragedy to a child? Those are just a few of the things our family had to think about and explain to Chris’s niece,  4 nephews, his son, and his step-daughter. When our family found out that Chris Read More »

Bryce Hackman

Handmade Hope – A Child’s Perspective

How I feel when I do the Handmade Hope is happy, comfortable, sometimes sad. When I do Handmade Hope is when I actually look at the photos and think, where was I then and what I was doing. When I do go to the Indiana Donor Network and see and meet some families there because of Handmade Hope, is simply amazing and makes me wonder who they lost and what Read More »