PETALING JAYA: The“Mercedes” emblem on her belly is a reminder to Chew Hoong Ling, 29, of what she has believed in since 13 when she pledged to donate her organs.
She donated 60% of her liver to Lee An Qi, 13, in January last year but Lee died eight months later due to a lung infection.
Chew, who was inspired to donate her organs after reading about organ and blood donation, found out about Lee through an e-mail. Lee had been diagnosed with cancer of the liver in October 2008.
Chew responded to the email, mistaking it for an appeal for blood donation, only to learn later that it was for liver donation.
“When I went for the compatibility tests, I found out I have only one kidney, which has become a joke among my friends. “They all say I probably donated my kidney in my past life, and that is why I’m only left with one,” she joked.
The scar from her surgery resembles the Mercedes emblem. The former Selamat Pagi Malaysia host who is now an organ donation activist is setting up an online community about organ donations.
“My objective is to increase organ donation pledges and provide as much information as possible about organ donations worldwide,”
She also plans to publish a book on organ donations. “I’m writing about my journey and experience. The idea came about when I had my surgery. There were many journalists interviewing me, and I thought, why not pen it down in a book,” she said.
Chew said the book comprises three parts. “The first part will be my personal story to inspire people to be donors, the second part will explain the frequently asked questions by people who may want to pledge.
“The last part will only be two pages long but it is the most important part of the book— the donor pledge form,” said Chew. The book, which will be launched mid-year, will be dedicated to Lee and a portion of the proceeds of the sale of the book will be channelled to organ donation campaigns.