Thank you for your interest in becoming a Sunshine donor! Our goal is to recruit fabulous, generous, kind, open-hearted, open-minded, compassionate, willing and able women who would like to help create families and bring incredible joy! We offer personal, compassionate and ongoing support right from the first time you email us to the first donation and beyond. Rikki and Nicola have supported hundreds of donors through the process and between them they have donated 10 times!
Why The Sunshine Egg Donor Program?
Thank you for your interest in becoming a Sunshine donor! Our goal is to recruit fabulous, generous, kind, open-hearted, open-minded, compassionate, willing and able women who would like to help create families and bring incredible joy!
We offer personal, compassionate and ongoing support right from the first time you email us to the first donation and beyond. Rikki and Nicola have supported hundreds of donors through the process and between them they have donated 10 times! This means they are well experienced in all aspects of the egg donation process and are well placed to help you every step of the way. There is no such thing as a stupid question and there is never any reason to feel shy or embarrassed. You name it, we have seen it.
We will make the application process as fast, simple and easy as we possibly can by helping you every step of the way but please be aware that just like the donation, there is some commitment needed from you in order to complete the application process. It IS worth it, we promise!
What happens now?
These are the steps to becoming an egg donor:
To make life easier for everyone, you are able to complete your application online. Register below and a user name and password will be emailed to you immediately. This means that you don't have to complete the application in one sitting. If you need to go and check on some info you can hit save, then use your registration details to log in at a later date and complete your application. You have 30 days to complete your application, upload your photos and submit. If you would prefer to have an application emailed to you so that you can complete it offline, please contact us on email@example.com. You can fill it in and send it back when you are ready.
- Complete the mini application here with your basic info and the marvellous minds inside the computer will let you know if you meet the initial requirements. If you do, you will automatically be taken to the not so mini application - don't faint, its only 11 pages!
- Complete the full application with the rest of your details and photos.
- One of our team will interview you either by phone or in person depending on where you live - this gives you the opportunity to ask as many questions as you like and gives us the opportunity to make sure you understand the process 100%.
- Your profile is loaded onto a password protected database.
Once you are chosen
It can take anything from 3 minutes to 3 months to be chosen as a donor. Each recipient or intended parent is looking for that special donor. Someone that may feel familiar to them or have similar traits. Someone they feel comfortable with. Please be patient and contact us if you have any concerns.
When one of our recipients chooses you to be a donor, we will ask them to write you a letter telling you a little about themselves - why they need a donor, where they live, why they chose you! We will forward that letter on to your email address and then call to let you know and to confirm your availability. Take a day or 2 to think about it and make sure you are ready to be a donor. Once your decision is made, you let your donation coordinator - either Rikki or Nicky - know and they will help you to get the ball rolling. All of your costs are paid by the recipients who choose you. This includes your doctor's appointments, scans, blood tests and medication.
Please keep in mind that certain clinics have a different way of doing things but this is the basic process of donation:
Step 1: You meet the doctor, a fertility specialist who is going to be in charge of your donation. He will do an internal ultrasound to make sure your ovaries are healthy and in working order. You will also be sent for blood tests. The doctor will ask you to go on a birth control pill for around 2 or 3 months. This is used to sync your cycle up with your recipient's cycle.
Step 2: You meet with the psychologist who spends an hour chatting with you. This is to make sure you are emotionally mature enough to donate.
Step 3: Once all your tests and reports come back, the clinic coordinator will work out your donation plan. She will check with you via phone and email to make sure you are happy with the dates.
Step 4: Usually around 2 months after your initial appointments the egg donation process will begin. This means you will stop the birth control pill and start doing injections every day for about 12 days.
Step 5: You will go for approximately 4 or 5 scans during this time. The doctor will do an internal ultrasound to assess the growth of the eggs. Once they are almost ready to be retrieved, the doctor will ask you to do 2 final injections to help prepare the eggs for retrieval.
Step 6: On about day 14 you will have your egg retrieval. Expect to be at the clinic about 2 hours but the procedure itself only takes about 15 minutes under a light anesthetic. You will not see, hear or feel a thing during the procedure and will be ready to go home about an hour after.
Who makes a good egg donor?
A healthy young woman between the ages of 21 and 33 who has the time to commit to the egg donation process. Preferably a non-smoker or someone who smokes less than 10 per day.
What is the process?
Once a recipient chooses you and you have accepted we will give you the clinics contact details. We ask you to book your own initial appointments according to your schedule.
Screening to be a donor: a one hour appointment with the fertility doctor who will talk you the process in more detail. He will do an internal pelvic ultrasound and blood tests as well as a one hour appointment with the psychologist. This is not a major head-shrinking session and is used purely to confirm that you are emotionally mature enough to undertake the donation.
Syncing: once you are passed to donate, the clinic will start you on a low dose birth control pill. This is to help sync your cycle up with your recipient's cycle.
Starting medication: about 1.5 to 2 months after your screening you will start the actual donation. This involves around 12 days of injections and 3 to 5 scan appointments (each clinic varies) to check the growth of the eggs.
Donation: You will need to be at the clinic for about 2 hours on the day you donate.
How long does the egg donation process take?
The entire process happens anything from 1.5 to 3 months from the date you are chosen. Treatment itself takes 2 weeks. The egg retrieval procedure takes only 15 minutes.
What side effects will I experience from taking fertility medication?
Most egg donors go through the process with no side effects; however, some may feel bloating, pelvic discomfort or moodiness. If you do experience these symptoms it will only be during the 12 days of medication and will wear off the day after your egg retrieval.
How will egg donation affect my lifestyle?
Once on fertility drugs, you need to ensure that you have protected sexual intercourse for that month as well as the 2 weeks following egg donation. From start to finish, you will generally have 7 doctor visits; the majority of these visits occur during the two weeks prior to egg retrieval.
What if I don't live near a clinic?
We work with clinic's in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth and Pretoria. If you don't live within driving distance of one of these clinics it is no problem you can be what we call a 'traveling donor'! Once you accept to donate at a clinic in one of these cities, we will organise all your travel arrangements and pay for all your travel expenses. You will need to stay near the clinic for approximately 8 nights. During this time you will go for about 3 to 5 scans and then undergo your egg retrieval after which you can travel home!
Applicants from the UK and Canada:
Sunshine Egg Donors is now recruiting donors in Canada and the UK. We work with world class facilities in the UK, Barbados and Canada. You can choose to either donate close to home or to be a traveling donor. As a traveling donor, all your expenses will be paid when you travel to the world class fertility clinic in Barbados. Please request more information if you are interested.
Please be advised, this option is open to donors living outside of SA only.
Will I be more or less fertile after egg donation?
You will be more fertile in the month following egg donation. After one month, you will return to your normal fertility status.
How many eggs will I donate each time?
Egg production depends on the individual donor and how they respond to the medication; the ideal number of eggs to ensure the best chance at success is around 8 to 12. Some donors can produce as few as 2 and some as many as 25. Women are born with about 2 million eggs. Whether you donate once or the maximum 6 times - you will still have plenty to use when you are ready to have babies of your own!
How does egg donation affect my fertility in the future?
Egg donation does not have any long-term effects on your fertility.
What are some of the medical risks or other medical complications that may occur if I donate my eggs?
Egg retrieval is always performed under ultrasound guidance. However, there is a risk that a needle may puncture surrounding tissue or organs causing bleeding and/or infection. There is also a small risk (less than 1% of all IVF patients experience this) of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome. During ovarian hyperstimulation, the ovaries become enlarged and fluid may collect in the abdominal cavity causing bloating and pelvic pain may occur. This is why it is so important to stay in touch with your support person after retrieval. We will make sure that you receive the best follow up care. All your medical expenses related to the donation are covered by your recipient.
How much will I get paid for my time and services?
The current compensation for your time and commitment is R6000 per donation. This figure is set by SASREG (The South African Society for Reproductive Medicine).
Will the couple who receives my eggs ever find out who I am?
The egg donation process is completely anonymous, the couple will not find out who you are. They will know characteristics about you, but not your name or any other information that could lead to your identification.
What is involved with taking fertility medication?
The medications you will need to take are in the form of an injection. You will be required to give yourself injections one time per day for two weeks. The clinic coordinator will give you instructions on how to do the injections and your support person will be available on the phone to talk you through the first few days.
Will I be put under general anesthesia for egg retrieval?
Clinics use intravenous (IV) sedation, which is administered by an anesthesiologist. You will be under for 10 to 15 minutes and will be awake and ready to go home about an hour after the retrieval. It is advisable that you rest up for a few hours afterward. You are not allowed to drive yourself home from the procedure. If a friend or family member is unable to collect you, one of our team will make sure you get home safe.
Will I experience a lot of pain or bleeding after egg retrieval?
No. You may experience some discomfort similar to menstrual cramps which may include the following: bloating, spotting, abdominal cramping. The clinic will give you some pain medication to take at home should this occur
How long will it take for my body to return to normal after egg retrieval?
About 10 to 12 days after you donate you will have a period and after this your body should be back to normal. If you would like, you can start birth control again with this period.
How often can I donate?
South African guidelines allow up to six donations or five live births, whichever comes first. You don't have to decide this now. Do one donation and see how you feel. If you would like to donate again, we would be happy to have you!
Can I donate if I am on birth control?
The pill: yes, you can donate whilst on the pill
Mirena: yes, this will need to be removed and then replaced on the day you donate. The cost of this will be paid for by your recipient
Copper T or other non-hormone IUD: yes.
Tubes tied: yes
Injection: No. If you want to donate you need to stop having the injection and wait until you have 2 regular period cycles
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