3 ways you could help save a life on Facebook

bullying, suicide, Facebook, organ donation, compassion, stickyJesus

Open your eyes to the needs around you.


From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked. ~Luke 12:48

by Toni Birdsong
As social media becomes more integrated into our everyday life, so too, the moral and social responsibility rises in step. Did you know there are three powerful tools on Facebook that can actually save a life? Hats off to Facebook developers who have wisely integrated the Anti-Bullying Initiative, the Suicide Referral System, and just recently, the Organ Donation Status.

By taking a few minutes to connect with each of these Facebook features and logging on with an “awakened heart,” as we’ve so often discussed on this blog and in our book, @stickyJesus: how to live out your faith online, your online time can impact that reaches beyond the everyday chatter.

While the Anti-Bullying Initiative and the Suicide Referral System can be powerful, practical ways to help Facebook “friends” in danger online, the Organ Donation Status could very well be a cultural game changer in the world of organ transplants. It’s estimated that more than 114,000 people in the U.S, nearly 10,000 people in the UK and millions more around the world are waiting for a suitable organ. Many will die waiting because there aren’t enough organ donors to meet the need.

According to officials of Donate Life America in the past few weeks of Facebook launching it’s organ donation status option, donor registration has skyrocketed and “dwarfs any past organ donation initiative.”Know what to do and where to click:

Organ Donation: To be an organ donor via Facebook go to your timeline and choose > ‘Life Event’ in your status update box, choose the option > ‘Health and Wellness’  > ‘Organ Donor.’ Signing up takes seconds. Your organ donor status will then appear in your “About” section of your profile.

Suicide Referral System: If a friend posts a comment related to suicide you can report it to Facebook by clicking the “x” next to the comment that will give you the option to report. Facebook will then send an email to the comment’s author directing them to a telephone hotline or a link they can click to start a confidential chat.  For more on steps to handle suicidal comments or threats, go to Facebook’s Help Center. To get there, go to Help button under your profile > Safety Center. There you will find a step-by-step diagram on ‘How to Report Abuse.’

The "Help" section of your profile allows you to access all information by a simple search.

Anti-Bullying Initiative: To learn more about how to identify and report bullying online, go to the Facebook Family Safety Center and get a primer—it’s excellent. Go to > Help under your profile > Safety Center. There you will find a step-by-step diagram on ‘How to Report Abuse.’

Post/Tweet this today
Log online today with an awakened heart. Listen to the post behind the post and the tweet behind the tweet. #LiveSticky

For more on how to live with the heart of Christ online get your copy of @stickyJesus: how to live out your faith online. A field guide for pastors, parents, and anyone seeking to share Christ in their online communities.

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  • http://notashamedofthegospel.com/ Peter Guirguis

    Thank you very much Toni for that information, it is very helpful. I did know about the organ donor one because that was in the news but I had no idea about the suicidal and anti-bullying help too.

    It’s actually a breath of fresh air because it seems that most of the news about Facebook is negative. But that’s just the media reporting and we know because of posts like this that there are some positive things that Facebook is doing.

  • tonibirdsong

    Thanks for adding to the conversation @peterguirguis:disqus . Facebook is a powerful channel when we choose to use it for the good stuff. I was happy to learn about all three crisis connection points myself. 
    Love that Facebook is taking it’s power seriously and doing some “good” for the millions using it. See you soon — live sticky online! #All4Him

  • Paul Clutterbuck

    I know this post is quite an old one, but I was going through my email archive and discovered it. I’m a recipient of two kidney transplants, in 1990 and 2003. My first one was in the same year that I first became a Christian, and really brought home to me for the first time the true meaning of Easter, as well as providing a foundation for my new understanding of Christian ethics, based in the selfless, sacrificial generosity of the Cross. For me now, it remains the central meaning of my life and my Christian experience, and my two kidney transplants have been rather like the two silver candlesticks in Victor Hugo’s great novel. Indeed, I plan to write my memoir in about 20 years, and will title it Two Silver Candlesticks as a conscious reference to the radical redemption I have received.

    Thank you, Toni, for this post encouraging Christians to become organ donors. I would likewise encourage Christians to take up this call wherever they can. You never know whose life you may help to turn around as a result of this indescribable gift!

  • http://philipamiola.org/ Philip Amiola

    These features appear to be limited to certain regions. I can’t access them here in Nigeria. Am I getting something wrong?