Zaidee's legacy: inspiring families to discuss organ donation


Zaidee Rose Alexander Turner – aged 7 years and 22 days died suddenly on 2nd December 2004 from a burst blood vessel in her brain called a Cerebral Aneurism. Zaidee’s parents, Kim and Allan, founded Zaidee’s Rainbow Foundation not long after.

Zaidee Turner

At the time of Zaidee’s death the Turner family had been registered Organ and Tissue Donors for 5 years. As a result Zaidee donated her organs and tissues at the Royal Children’s Hospital, as were her wishes at the time.

Zaidee’s gifts help save or improve the lives of 7 people.

Zaidee was the only child in Victoria under the age of 16 years and we have been told one of the youngest Australians to donate her organs and tissues in 2004. She was only 1 of 6 children nationally to donate their organs in 2004.

Zaidee’s Story is directed towards both children and adults so they can think about others who are waiting for a life saving operation and a suitable match for an organ or tissue. Think about giving this gift to others so they can live a better life and in some cases, have a second chance at life.

Zaidee’s gift of her organs and tissues to others will allow them to have another birthday. 1 in 5 people on the transplant waiting list will never get the chance to have another birthday if people do not become registered donors but more importantly discuss this in their families.


The symbol is representative of hope; after every storm the sun shines and there is a rainbow. For those people on the transplant waiting list, the rainbow symbol offers them hope. At the end of their rainbow is an organ or tissue to improve their life – or in most cases – save their life.

In 2004, the year Zaidee died, so too did 130,000 other Australians. Only 218 were organ donors.

In 2013, 150,000 Australians died but still only 391 where solid organ donors that 1122 people benefited from. Still not enough donors to make sure those on the waiting list get their much-needed transplant.

Zaidee’s rainbow shoelaces.

71% of Australians believe that their family members’ know their wishes, yet only 56% actually know the wishes of their family members.

Zaidee’s Rainbow Shoelaces are at the core of our campaigns and Australia’s national symbols used to create awareness for this subject. The community can reflect their support by wearing the laces, which are sold for just $2 a pair. Zaidee Turner wore rainbow-coloured laces in her shoes when she was a little girl and it was in her memory that the concept of Zaidee’s Rainbow Shoelaces was developed.

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