Sunninghill, South Africa
"MAKE THE WORLD MORE EQUITABLE."
Kwanele uses her extra life to advocate for the health rights of indigent Africans with cancer.
Rosemount, Minnesota, USA
"EVEN THE SMALL THINGS MATTER."
After receiving a new heart valve at the age of 82 due to chronic heart problems, Phil’s life changed for the better and he hopes to expand the positive effect of singing and music on others.
Cividale del Friuli (UD), Italy
"BECOME AN EMPOWERED PATIENT."
Lucia has interstitial cystitis/bladder pain syndrome (IC/BPS). She decided to donate part of her extra life to advocate for patients to attain an early diagnosis and the best treatments available.
"IT’S GOING TO BE OKAY. I WILL CARRY AND SUPPORT YOU."
Obesity severely impacted the quality of Victoria’s life for years. Victoria now collaborates with health professionals in the fight against obesity.
Bloomington, Minnesota, USA
"GET OUT AND DO SOMETHING – GIVE IT AWAY!"
Fran received a pacemaker following a quintuple bypass surgery in 1993. He is now 91 years old and continues to volunteer so people transitioning out of homelessness and poverty in his community can receive household goods they need.
"LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL, ALWAYS!"
At the age of 24, Elisabetta was diagnosed with ductal invasive metastatic breast cancer. She uses her extra life to change the lives of people dealing with cancer.
Matthews, North Carolina, USA
"SMILE FOR NO REASON AT ALL SEVERAL TIMES A DAY."
Eric was a professional opera singer when in 2012, he suffered a massive stroke. He dedicates his extra life to music therapy.
Type 1 Diabetes
"IT’S OKAY TO MOURN THE LIFE YOU ONCE HAD."
Cajsa was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2002 and started using an insulin pump in 2006. She believes this has given her extra life, which she uses to give back to a community that supported her when she needed it the most.
Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
"DON’T FEAR DIVERSITY; EMBRACE IT."
While cross-country skiing, R.T. Rybak had a heart attack. A three-term mayor of Minneapolis, R.T. is using his extra life as a community advocate, serving as president and CEO of the Minneapolis Foundation and a member of the leadership council of Generation Next.
"CEASE TO STRUGGLE, AND YOU CEASE TO LIVE."
Yongkuan volunteers at the Chinese Red Cross Foundation and serves as president and co-founder of Jiangsu Parkinson’s Association, raising awareness about Parkinson’s disease and its treatment options.
Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Type 1 Diabetes
"BE THE AUTHOR OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL STORY: YOURS!"
Roberta was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 14 years old. She volunteers for a program that offers young people living with diabetes activities, support, and the opportunity to share experiences.
New York, New York, USA
"DO IT FOR THE NEXT GIRL."
Much of Leah’s early life was limited by scoliosis. Today, she empowers and supports girls diagnosed with scoliosis.
Saint Louis, Missouri, USA
Type 1 Diabetes
"BUILD BRIDGES TO THOSE DIFFERENT FROM YOU."
Jack was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at age 11. As a result of his new life, Jack started a global nonprofit, Penpals United, which offers online support groups to children with type 1 diabetes in resource-poor communities worldwide.
"NEVER GIVE UP."
Natalia was diagnosed with torsion dystonia. She now advocates for people with torsion dystonia and hopes to support rehabilitation programs for patients.
"LEARN FROM OTHERS."
Wang is dedicated to give back after he received encouragement and support from patients during his treatment.
Check out how these incredible individuals have used their extra lives with the help of medical technology.
Share your story with us, and show the world how you are making a difference. For every story, the Medtronic Foundation will donate $10 to Project HOPE.