National BAME Transplant Alliance
1049. Kirit Modi
Kirit Modi, from Harrow, is a kidney transplant recipient, Life Vice-Chair of the National Kidney Federation and founding member of The National Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) Transplant Alliance (NBTA) who works with black, Asian and ethnic minority communities to encourage organ donation.
There is an urgent shortage of organs for transplant for people from all backgrounds but it’s particularly acute for kidney transplant patients from BAME communities, with Asian patients on average having to wait 6 months longer than it would take someone from a White background. At a grassroots level Kirit has worked with a wide range of community groups including Neasden Temple, London’s largest Hindu temple, to create targeted campaigns in English, Hindi, and Gujarati to raise awareness of living donations and donations after death.
Kirit received his award at a reception to mark Diwali in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Westminster, from Mr Philip May, on behalf of the Prime Minister (pictured below).
In a personal letter to Kirit, Prime Minister Theresa May said:
“Your work with the ‘National Kidney Federation’ and ‘National BAME Transplant Alliance’ is raising awareness and changing attitudes about organ donation in Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic communities. You should feel incredibly proud of the work you are doing with faith and community groups to increase the number of organ donors and help some of the most vulnerable people in our society.”
Bob Blackman, Kirit’s local MP for Harrow East, said:
“I congratulate Kirit Modi in his endeavours being recognised by the Prime Minister and now receiving such an illustrious award.
“His work in the field of BAME organ donation is first-rate and he has, no doubt, raised awareness and saved lives in the process.
“To anyone who is BAME, I urge you consider signing up as a donor.”
“I am honoured to receive this recognition which is a result of working collaboratively with many organisations, particularly BAME groups, over many years. I believe that the introduction of deemed consent in England will generate a national debate which will significantly increase the number of organ donors. Our aim should be that nobody should die while waiting for an organ transplant in the UK. I am passionate about explaining the key messages related to deemed consent, particularly within the Hindu and Jain communities.”