Inspirational teen to share importance of organ donation to Gold Coast school kids

A GOLD Coast charity is hoping to spread a life-saving message to local school kids.

Save Lives Donate Organs (SLDO) will this week embark on a school tour with inspirational 17-year-old Queenslander, Coen Ashton to deliver an inspirational and educational message about the life changing benefits of organ donation.

Born with cystic fibrosis and now a double lung transplant recipient, Coen’s message to students aims to change the culture around organ and tissue donation in Australia.


No stranger to the spotlight, Coen’s story was followed with amazement by the Australian media when he defied odds at age 13, in desperate need of a double lung transplant to survive, and jetskied the length of the Murray River in 7 weeks to raise awareness for organ donation.

Receiving his life saving organ transplant through donation, he later returned and completed the same journey in 7 days, proving the positive impact that organ donation can have on a young life.

Coen will join SLDO President Brett Bullock to reach nearly 2000 local high school students from the 12 – 14 November.

“SLDO is proud to be working with Coen to bring his life coaching sessions to our schools on the Gold Coast,” said SLDO President Brett Bullock, himself a kidney transplant recipient.

“Meeting Coen, and sharing with him what it means to be an organ donation recipient, I know his message is one that connects with students as they think about making their own decisions around organ donation.”

Coen will be presenting his life coaching sessions in partnership with SLDO to students at Emmanuel College, AB Patterson College, Benowa State High School and Marymount College from Wednesday 12 to Friday 14 November.

Save Lives Donate Organs (SLDO) was registered as a charity in Queensland in June 2014 after it was established by a group of Gold Coast friends to increase awareness and, ultimately, the rate of organ donation in Australia.

More information about SLDO and registering to become an organ donor in Australia can be found at