When I Die Can I Give My Body To The Needy?

An Argument For Organ And Tissue Donation

Can I? You can help someone with something you no longer have a need for – like a cloth you’ve outgrown, a shoe no longer your foot size, a wristwatch you are done wearing or a phone you are no longer interested in using. What about something more? Like saving a man dying on his hospital bed, saving a family from the sorrow and depression the impeding death of their six-year-old daughter will bring, saving the lives serving as the only source of some people’s happiness and joy or saving an orphan who has seen so much sorrow since she was born. I am trying to make a case for Organ Donation. I am trying to make a case for commonsense.

Will you help them? Will you help the needy smile again if you can? I presume you are a good person and you answered yes. So, why don’t you help people in need of kidneys? Why don’t you help people waiting for heart transplants? Why don’t you help people in need of sound livers? I mean, why is it that when we die we take every vital organ we have, organs which are more important than cars, organs even our modern science can’t replicate, organs more important than money, to the grave? Can you help someone with what you are no longer using? Why is it crazy and stupid to bury Cars, Gold, Money and other valuables with its dead owner but normal to bury the dead owner with healthy organs that worth more?

One of Brazil’s richest and powerful men, Thane Chiquinho Scarpa, tried to bury his Million Dollar Bentley so that when he dies he can continue the luxurious lifestyle he enjoys on earth in the afterlife. There was an outrage. The people lashed at him on social media and the streets offered him doses of insults. Not only was it thoughtless, it was also wasteful and annoying. Scarpa ignored them. He kept pushing, making several updates on his social media handles, telling the GOOD and CARING people advising him, how far he has gone in achieving his goal. There was more outrage and criticisms but he didn’t care or pay attention to them. The CARING and GOOD people were angry that he could have donated to charity or helped the poor but he is promoting stupidity instead.

He was interviewed on several media channels and each time he insisted his plan must go through. The day came. Moments before Scarpa lowered his million-dollar Bentley into the ground, he addressed the people and revealed the point he was trying to make. He said it was sad that people were angry at him for trying to bury his car when they bury something worth more than a Bentley. He finds it absurd that people who bury vital body organs find it easy to condemn him for attempting something less. The whole thing was a show he put up to raise awareness for organ donation. They never prepared for the sermon they got and their advice and good intentions were replaced with introspection. Minds and consciences were touched.

“People condemn me because I wanted to bury a million dollar Bentley, in fact most people bury something a lot more valuable than my car”. “They bury hearts, livers, lungs, eyes, kidneys. This is absurd. So many people waiting for a transplant and you will bury your healthy organs that will save so many lives.”


When I die can I give my body to the needy? Before you die will you offer your organs to the needy or you’d let it rot in the ground? In Nigeria, Africa and some parts of the world, the sole reason organ donation has not been brought to light or encouraged is simply the fear of culture, superstitions beliefs and pride. The notion that any attempt at suggesting the idea is tantamount to disrespecting the dead. The fear that body parts harvested from the body of a dead person could be used for some diabolic spiritual exercise. The respect for cultures that have outlived their relevance. And the superstitious believe that a dead person buried without full body parts could generate disastrous effects.

Many things done in the name of culture do not help the men carrying out the traditions themselves. So many damaging things, retrogressive to the propagation of healthy human existence, have been encouraged in the name of culture. So many derivatives of the superstitious beliefs we hold have taken us backwards. We’ve caught men who mine human skulls for evil purposes but it is not enough reason to blacklist organ and tissue donation. If our bodies are just containers like most of us belief and accept, and our spirit is the main thing, why do we care so much about burying the dead whole when a living person needs a part? Why bury a healthy kidney that will rot in months when someone needs one? I am Proposing the establishment of a Centre for Organ and Tissue Donation in Nigeria.

Culture is not permanent. It is dynamic. Each generation weigh presented ideas and sieve out what appears out of touch health wise and otherwise and keep the good stuff. Majority of us, Nigerians and Africans, are either Christians or Muslims and the idea that donating some portion of our dead body defile our corpse and journey into the afterlife, is antagonistic to the core of our belief – that the afterlife is the journey of the soul and not the physical body. Let’s not go religious. The point is, our cultures were developed from needs to tackle problems that disturb us. This is great.


What it means is that if a brother is dying we have the obligation to damn culture and rescue him. If a sister is heartbroken we are mandated to damn culture and comfort her. If our fathers are troubled we have the obligation to show love. I’m proposing we make organ donation our culture as it will help in the reduction of people who die everyday waiting for organ donors. It will help to put a smile on someone’s face. Rather than bury those vital healthy organs let’s learn to offer them to dying people in the hospital. We need organizations and laws on organ donation around here. If it is silly to sink that Jeep into the ground along its owner because it is expensive, why should it be wise to do so with something that is more expensive?

Just some facts for you:

  • Do you know that twenty-two(22) people die everyday while waiting for an organ donor?
  • Do you know that one organ donor can save the life of eight(8) persons and change the life of over 50 people?

Multiply the number of healthy people who die and are buried with their healthy organs intact everyday by the number of people who die because they need just one organ from that healthy person that died and see how many lives would have been saved everyday.

  • Do you know that age or medical history doesn’t matter if you must donate an organ? There are very few conditions that would prevent a person from becoming a donor—such as HIV infection, active cancer, or a systemic infection.

You should consider registering if there is one in your country. It’s time we have that centre in Nigeria. Even with an illness, you may be able to donate your organs or tissues.

Children as well as adults can donate organs. Organ donation is free and you are not charged a dime. Ethnicity or race doesn’t matter if you want to donate an organ. Only that the success of the transplant exercise is increased when the patients race and ethnicity matches with that of the donor.

To register as an organ donor Click for USA
For South Africa Click
For India Click
For Qatar Click.

Will You Help Someone With What You Are No Longer Using? It’s time we have one in Nigeria and I don’t want my body to rot in the ground.

About Poet 87 Articles
I am Rey Alaetuo, a conscious Poet and health care professional living in Lagos, Nigeria. I've written three collection of Poems, I am an exponent of humanism and a vigilant Poet. I am deeply interested in the propagation of positive human values and behaviour.

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