Donate Life California
Organ & Tissue Donor Registry
DONATE LIFE CALIFORNIA is the state-authorized nonprofit organization responsible for managing the organ, eye and tissue donor registry. Our mission is to save lives by creating opportunities for all Californians to sign up on the official state organ, eye and tissue donor registry. Our vision is that one day all Californians will embrace organ, eye and tissue donation as their personal responsibility.
DONATE LIFE CALIFORNIA represents the four federally designated organ recovery organizations (OPOs) in the state of California and is charged with educating the community about the need and importance for people to register their donation wishes, along with the following:
- Record donation decisions in the donor registry (Donate Life California) – a confidential database of donation wishes to be carried out at the time of death.
- Provide educational programs to high school students prior to their being asked about their donation wishes when they apply for their first driver license.
- Provide outreach programs in diverse communities.
- Support the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) by providing staff training and donor registry information.
- Provide the public with a direct line to donation professionals who can answer questions.
- Work with the media to accurately report donation stories.
- Raise funds to support public education programs.
PRIOR TO 2004, no registry had existed for Californians who wished to give consent to be an organ, eye and/or tissue donor. Historically, while signing a donor card and placing the pink dot on your license served as an important symbol of your intent, it did not place you on any list or registry.
In April 2005, California launched an online organ, eye and tissue donor registry called the “Donate Life California Organ & Tissue Donor Registry.”
This confidential database allows Californians to share their organ and tissue donation wishes by registering online. In July of 2006, the Donate Life California Registry took a giant step forward as it began its partnership with the DMV, replacing donor stickers and donor cards.
By checking the “YES!” box on DMV driver license and ID card applications or renewal forms, the applicant’s license or ID card is imprinted with a pink “DONOR” dot indicating that the cardholder is a registered organ, eye and tissue donor and that the applicant’s name has been added to the secure, confidential database of donors. For the first time since its inception more than 30 years ago, the pink dot represents a legally binding record captured on the Donate Life California Registry.