Dance to advocate for organ donation

Photo courtesy of Marquita Redd

Day 8 of 31

Here is the story of Marquita Redd:

My name is Marquita and I am an organ donation advocate. My dad had a liver transplant when I was 15. When I was 17, just before entering college, I was diagnosed with primary sclerosing cholangitis, a rare liver disease.

I was determined to finish my studies and start a professional dancing career, and I did. I continued to dance professionally in Philadelphia, Memphis, and Milwaukee. I subsequently obtained a master of fine arts in dance.

After my graduate studies, my health declined rapidly. I was put on the waiting list for a liver transplant. On December 1, 2016, I received the gift of life. I spent about a month in a recovery house where I met other people who have had organ transplants. I have met people who had received or needed a double lung transplant due to cystic fibrosis.

Since receiving a liver transplant, I have used various platforms to advocate for organ donation. I founded the Redd Arts Company, a non-profit dance company, which uses dance to raise awareness of the need for organ donation. I also volunteer with organizations, like Lifelink of Georgia, that raise awareness about organ donation.

Currently an elementary school dance teacher, I am transitioning to a career in social work so that I can be a mental health counselor for people with chronic illnesses. I would like to become a social worker on a transplant team. Finally, I have a Reiki energy healing company, MJ Healing Studio, and I offer special treatments for members of the organ transplant community.

Cystic Fibrosis News Today’s 31 Day CF campaign will feature one article per day during Cystic Fibrosis Awareness Month in May. follow us on Facebook and Instagram for more stories like this use the hashtag # 31DaysofCF, or go here to see the full series.

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