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Impact 0359: Donating a liver to save a life

Cherie Wong · 23 February 2022
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Reader’s Note:

This article was originally published on Youthopia on 2 February 2021. Though some of the events and details in this article may have changed since, we hope to remember those in our community who made an impact to the world around them.

Donating your organs is a tough decision to make in life, understandably.

Most might find the decision easier to make when it comes to saving their family members and relatives.

For Cherie Wong however, she made the decision to donate part of her liver to a one-year-old child whom she had never met without any hesitation.

The 30-year-old, a freelance personal trainer and yoga instructor who also runs her own esports and influencer management company, made the donation on Jan 20 at the National University Hospital.

When asked why she had done so, Cherie said:  “She’s so young and I feel like everyone should live life on their own terms…so for me, I felt that it was unfair because she basically didn’t have that chance.”

A laid back person who loves making jokes, Cherie found out about the one-year-old’s plight when she came across an appeal for financial help for hospital bills and a liver donor on Facebook.

She then reached out to the child’s parents through WhatsApp and also got in touch with the National University Hospital (NUH) subsequently.

“I thought to myself: I don’t have a lot of money to give, so why don’t I just give my liver?” she said.

Cherie said as the child’s condition was deteriorating quickly, the procedures she had to go for, such as blood tests, were sped up.

“I was doing more than one test a day, and if I remember correctly, we started the process in late October and it was pretty much finalised by early December,” Cherie shared.

Cherie’s friends and family were very supportive of her decision.

“They understood my decision and because I surround myself with people that share the same values, it wasn’t a difficult thing for people to get behind,” she said.

Actor J Kishan, one of the talents that Cherie manages, took to Instagram to share how proud he was of her brave act.

He wrote in his post: “An easy thing to say here but an ordeal to go through and trust me when I tell you I saw the pain in her face but when you look at her… that pain was masked by the fulfillment of someone knowing that a one-year-old kid will have the fighting chance to live.”

The comments section were filled with heartwarming messages from netizens praising Cherie for her brave choice and her kindheartedness.

Cherie believes that it is good to be empathetic and compassionate to others. While she won’t advocate for organ donations, she believes that it is something to have in mind.

“I will not come out and say you guys must do this or do that because everyone should be given their own way to make a decision, but it’s something to put in mind… because there is never just one set path to helping someone,” she said.

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