A SCULPTURE was unveiled at the National Botanic Garden of Wales as part of Organ Donation Week.
The special event was held to raise awareness about organ donation and to recognize donor families in the Hywel Dda University Board of Health area and across Wales.
The sculpture represents a kingfisher emerging from the water, representing growth, life and hope. It is located in the new pond project of the botanical garden.
Among those who attended the unveiling was Jesse Lewis, who spoke about how organ donation affected his family after his son Jac, from Ammanford, sadly took his own life.
He said, “The last days of Jac’s life were filled with hope for us, and when that was taken out, I immediately thought of transplants.
“There are so many people waiting and hoping for a chance to continue living normal lives. ”
Following this, Jesse and his wife Janet established the Jac Lewis Foundation, a charity, based in Ammanford AFC, to help people with mental health issues.
He added, “It offers hope, and I think it’s the ingredient that gives people the fight inside them to keep going.
“Nothing that has been accomplished so far will ever stop the pain of losing Jac, as anyone who has lost someone so close will know.
“However, turning that pain into hope for someone else makes their existence meaningful, knowing that their life has positively impacted the lives of many others.”
The Kingfisher sculpture at the National Botanic Garden of Wales with designer Paul Clarke
Rea John, NHS Blood and Transplant Nurse Specialist, said: ‘Even though we have had a withdrawal system in Wales for almost six years, families will still be consulted before organ donation.
“It’s important to let your family and friends know about your decision, so they know what you want to happen if organ donation becomes a possibility.
“Please talk to your family today, it makes it a bit easier for them if they ever find themselves in this position. ”
The sculpture was designed by local artist, Paul Clarke, who used materials from the three counties of Hywel Dda to maintain the link with the board of health.
“It’s a tribute to thank the families who, in their darkest times, find it in themselves to support and help save the lives of others,” Rea said.