(Photo: REUTERS/Lee Celano)
Justin Bieber has had a huge impact on organ and blood donations by encouraging fans to participate in donations through his Twitter feed.
Bieber made the call in response to encouragement from one of his fans. Helene Campbell tweeted Bieber from the handle @alungstory last week, when she wrote, "Hey @justinbieber! I BELIEB you should use that Canadian voice of yours and help save lives like mine #beanorgandonor beadonor.ca #giveblood."
Bieber quickly responded to Campbell, who is waiting for a lung transplant herself, saying, "i got the word....you have amazing strength. i got u. #BeAnOrganDonor."
He followed that up with a second tweet saying, "help spread the word for @alungstoryhttp://www.alungstory.ca/ #BeAnOrganDonor" and "and @alungstory NEVER SAY NEVER."
Campbell, obviously touched by Bieber's quick support, tweeted back a thank you message, saying that it would have a "huge impact." Bieber again responded to her saying, "glad to be able to help. best part of what i do."
Bieber's words had an instant impact. According to MTV the Ontario-based Trillium Gift of Life Network saw donations rise to 1,200 people, more than four times the amount the network usually receives.
Ronnie Gavsie, President and CEO of the organization told E! News, had praise for Helene Campbell for reaching out to Bieber as part of her efforts to encourage donations. She said, "Helene Campbell is very courageous. She has done an incredible job inspiring and motivating Ontarians to register their consent to organ and tissue donation. On an average day we would expect about 50 new online registrations. Since Helene's campaign began last Thursday, the average has been closer to 200 per day!"
She also had praise for Bieber, saying, "There are over 1500 people in Ontario waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant. On behalf of all them and Trillium Gift of Life Network, thank you Helene and thank you Justin Bieber! In Ontario, if you have a signed donor card, you still need to register. Visit www.BeADonor.ca to register or check to be sure you are indeed a registered donor."