Courtney Keast would have loved having her picture on the front page of the newspaper.
She was never shy – and always loved helping others.
Now, even in death, her wish will be granted as the Keast family and Bendigo Advertiser join together to ensure her message is heard.
The Kyneton girl lost her life following a two-boat collision at Lake Eppalock on January 10.
She sustained serious head injuries and underwent two neuro-surgeries at the Royal Children's Hospital but lost her fight three days later.
Just two days before the accident, Courtney, 12, had spoken to her mum Jodie about organ donation. She’d questioned why anyone would say no to donation – uttering the words “why wouldn’t you”.
Inspired by those words, Jodie is doing what she can to spread her daughter's message.
Australia remains a world leader in transplant outcomes with 78 per cent of people willing to become organ donors, but 1500 people remain on the waiting list at any given time.
And while three in four people say they have discussed the decision with family members, only 53 per cent know their loved ones’ wishes.
Courtney’s Quest will aim to find 1532 new organ donors within four weeks, by encouraging people to consider giving life after death.
“For us now it’s about awareness,” Jodie said.
“I can’t believe how low the organ donation rate is for children. I guess it’s because people don’t think about it – can’t comprehend it.
“But even if someone says no, at least you know what they want. And there will be kids that say yes, like Courtney did.”
For more information go to www.donatelife.gov.au, to register go to donorregister.gov.au