On February 20, 2009, Kim donated a kidney’s to my long-term friend, Marion S. Barry, Jr. In 2013, Marion and Kim cofounded and incorporated the
A little more than a year ago, I was sitting and talking with a group of close friends and one of them mentioned that he
On February 20, 2009, Kim Dickens donated a kidney to long-time friend and mentor, Marion S. Barry, Jr.
In 2013, Marion and Kim co-founded and incorporated the “Marion Barry-Kim Dickens Kidney
Foundation”, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.
Ms. Dickens is the President & Chairperson of the Board. The foundation (MBKDKF), was created to
“Educate and Promote Kidney health and Kidney donation in minority communities”
A conversation between two friends led to a kidney transplant that saved one friend’s life; and added the joy of having been able to give that gift to the other’s life. In today’s news we are bombarded with stories of death and destruction. However, the life-giving stories rarely make the headlines. In our midst, we have one such story as we learn about the unselfish act of a dear friend who risked her life to save another.
MBKDKF work is focused on kidney health awareness, education and community outreach.
What must be made clear though is that people of every age, race, gender, religion and socio-economic
status are touched by and should be involved with this far-reaching need. We cannot turn away from the
fact that in 2013 of the 99,201 kidney transplants that were needed, only 14,029 transplants were
performed. The Marion Barry-Kim Dickens Kidney Foundation invites all to join in changing these figures
and saving lives.
Marion Barry – Kim Dickens Kidney Foundation’s focus is to raise awareness of the importance of Kidney health and Kidney donation in the minority communities. In addition to helping families with their non-medical expenses, the Foundation strives to increase public awareness and education about the importance of becoming a living donor.
A conversation between two friends led to a kidney transplant that saved one friend’s life; and added the joy of having been able to give that gift to the other’s life. In today’s news we are bombarded with stories of death and destruction. However, the life-giving stories rarely make the headlines. In our midst, we have one such story as we learn about the unselfish act of a dear friend who risked her life to saveanother. Kim Dickens is a loving mother, caring sister, dedicated friend and an entrepreneur extraordinaire. The proof of these descriptors lies in the fact that she helped save the life of a dear friend, former four (4) term Washington, DC Mayor Marion S. Barry, Jr. by giving him one of her kidneys. A native Washingtonian and the fourth of five children raised by a divorced mother, Kim places great emphasis on serving her family and her community. Fortunately, Kim, who has worked in the Healthcare/Pharmaceutical industry for more than 20 years, had some understanding of what the transplant procedure means. As a result, she now has not only a clearer understanding of the grave need for more donors; but she also has a firm resolve to assist in making their search for potential donors a fruitful one. Equally important, she understands the need to educate people about organ donation and assist them to move beyond the fears that result from not knowing the facts. Kim believes that education and the availability of resources to assist in this area are key. To move her objectives along, Kim has turned her focus to serving as the Co-founder, President and Chairperson of the Marion Barry-Kim Dickens Kidney Foundation, a 501c (3) non-profit organization. Through her work at the Foundation, Kim plans to help increase awareness of the need for more living donors and to help educate the citizenry on how to better prepare themselves to become donors by engaging in healthier mental, physical, emotional and spiritual lifestyles. As well, she has a concern for those living with renal disease and hopes that by providing education and resources will help them
live a better quality of life. Recent studies show that living-donor kidney transplants have tripled over the last several years. Still, an average of about 20 people die each day as a result of not having enough donated organs. Still further, every ten minutes someone is added to the waiting list.
On the fifth anniversary of the successful kidney transplant, Marion Barry, Kim Dickens and a group of friends and supporters launched The Marion Barry-Kim Dickens Kidney Foundation.
According to the National Kidney Foundation there are 120,990 people in need of organ donations today in the United States. Of this number 99,201 (82%) are waiting for kidneys. Bradley Warady, a medical adviser for the National Kidney Foundation said, “The worst thing that can happen obviously is to have patients die while waiting for organs. But it happens every day. Through the work of their new foundation, Marion and Kim plan to lower the number of deaths that occur because there simply aren’t enough donor organs available.” Awareness The Marion Barry-Kim Dickens Kidney Foundation intends to spread awareness about donating kidneys in Washington D.C.’s African-American community.
● 1 in 6 African-Americans have kidney disease.
● 9,000 African-Americans in Washington, DC have kidney disease that can lead to kidney failure.
● At every transplant center in the nation, African-Americans are the least likely to receive a kidney
from a living organ donor.
● There are more than 92,000 people waiting for a kidney in the United States, and over a third of
those are African Americans.
● Potential African American kidney transplant recipients experience significantly higher rates of psychological denial about the need for a kidney Marion believed the work has to be a “crusade” of sorts; and based on her own experience, Kim
underlines the importance of helping people to understand the processes. Education This foundation is committed to educating people; and to working with potential donors to overcome
any fears and apprehensions they may have. Community Outreach Community outreach will play an integral role in achieving the Foundation’s goal of raising awareness. Marion and Kim personally engage in efforts to move the masses toward a clearer understanding of what
it means to be a part of the organ donor and transplant community. The Foundation will engage in peer to peer, B2B and a host of other solutions in its work to increase the number of living and deceased donors. Specifically tailored community organizing strategies will be employed for those groups whose numbers are particularly low regarding participation. For instance
(currently among living donors): African Americans (11.1%); and men (38.6%) will receive heightened