Mr PASIN (Barker) (19:35): The Herd of Hope is an Australian charity which focuses on supporting organ recipients and donor families in regional and rural Australia. The organisation was founded in 2017 by organ recipient Megan McLoughlin, who I’m very proud to say is a resident of the Barossa, in my electorate of Barker.
Since its establishment, the charity has spread the message of hope for organ donation through events all around Australia, including the Bondi Beach Cattle Drive, where a herd of Australian Poll Hereford cattle was mustered onto the sands of Bondi Beach to raise national awareness about organ and tissue donation and to support regional transplant services.
As a child, Megan was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes. Later she become legally blind and was diagnosed with acute renal failure, being given three weeks to live in 2010, until a transplant saved her life.
Megan is an inspirational woman. No adversity seems too big or too hard to overcome. Despite her own battles, Megan is making a difference for others and continues to focus her energy on improving the lives of others. As well as being a mother of two—and I should note that she’s only one of 64 women in the world to deliver two children post double transplant—Megan has dedicated her life to supporting donor families and guiding organ recipients through the difficult process.
It’s no wonder that, in November 2018, Megan McLoughlin received the SA Local Hero award in the Australian of the Year awards.
I caught up with Megan this week in parliament at the launch of Parliamentary Friends of Organ Donation. Megan is a truly inspirational member of our local community in Barker who is making a big difference nationally. Megan continues to inspire me, and she continues to inspire the community with a positive message of hope.
For this, I commend Megan and everyone involved with Herd of Hope, and I remind people to have the conversation about organ and tissue donation. Do it for Megan.