You will have an initial chat over the phone with one of our donor coordinators who will provide you with more information and answer any questions you may have. Then you will meet the donor coordinator at the clinic and they will talk to you about the process and what is involved in being a donor.
- You will also be asked to produce a sperm sample for sperm counting and we will see if it freezes and thaws successfully.
Once we have checked that your sperm sample freezes and thaws successfully, we carry out screening tests for the following communicable diseases:
H epatitis B
We also check your blood group and screen to see if you carry the cystic fibrosis gene. Once all these checks are complete, you will have an appointment with one of our doctors who will go through your medical and family history with you.
Next you will see a counsellor for further information and sign a consent from which looks like this.
Our sperm banks are used by heterosexual couples, single women and lesbian couples. As the donor you can specify the type of people you would like to donate to.
The Status of Children Amendment Act 1987, subsequently amended in 2004, clearly defines the legal status of the donor, the woman’s partner and the child when conception occurs as a result of donor insemination, and the woman has undergone the procedure with the consent of her partner. The woman’s partner at the time of birth, whether by marriage, civil union or de facto, is a legal parent of the child. Neither the child nor the donor has any rights or liabilities in relationship to each other.
Follows these links to find the Human Assisted Reproductive Technology Act (HART Act) 2004 and the Status of Children Amendment Act 1987.
Sperm donors are kept updated on what happens after their donations are in use. You can know how many children are born, the gender of the children and the number of families involved.
In late 1996 I saw an ad for sperm donors in our local paper. My wife happened to be looking over as I read this and she commented that this would be a fantastic thing for me to do. We have known some friends who have been through a lot of fertility treatment recently, and we were both very moved by what we saw they had to experience in their desire to have their own child. They were lucky enough to get pregnant and when I saw the ad I thought about them, and how there must be other people going through the same thing.
I was very anxious at first, not knowing what to expect, and what the people would be like, and that everyone would know what I was going there for! I soon found I was always greeted with friendliness and a quiet “matter of fact” attitude. My wife and I met a doctor and a counsellor, and my wife was very interested to know all about the programme.
It was about a year after I had donated that I heard there was a pregnancy, and I really hadn’t given it a lot of thought, and did think any news would be years away! The clinic always kept us up to date with any outcomes, and also provided a forum to be able to speak with other donors through an annual meeting. Some of us had met children or parents, and some had heard nothing at all. I ended up helping 3 families where there have been 3 girls and 2 boys born. I wasn’t too bothered about contact, just was happy to know I had helped someone, but my wife often asked about how the children might be getting on, and if they looked at all like me.
One day I got a call from the Donor Co-Ordinator to tell me that one of the families had left some photos and a letter for me. I felt very excited, and privileged that they would consider me. I went in as soon as I could so I could see what the girl looked like, and in a way felt proud that she looked beautiful, happy, and also like our first girl! My wife was also excited and amazed at the similarity!
We were invited to go and see the counsellor again to talk about what it can mean to us and our family, if we have contact, and to talk about how we felt now that our donations had become a reality! It was really good to talk to someone who knew about other donors and families having contact, and the kind of things that happen.
The next thing for us, was to tell our own children…it took a while…waiting for the right moment ... age ... the right language! I talked to the Donor Co-Ordinator and she helped to ease my mind, and gave me some ideas . My wife and I talked a lot, and then one day…just did it. They were very happy! ... thought I was a great Dad for helping others! Full of questions ... really curious! And so amazed there were photos to look at.
We have now received regular photos from the family and look forward to answering any questions the children may have as they get older, or to meet them when they are ready.
We have not heard from the other families, but realise that it is always their choice about any contact, and who knows about the future. We do know how we feel about it, and if it happens...we are lucky!
One day, as I was listening to the radio, on my way to work…I heard a story about a couple who needed a sperm donor to have children, and that when they went to the clinic, there weren’t many donors to choose from. I was really surprised to hear this. I talked to my wife and she said why didn’t I go and see what it was all about and if I was eligible. She was very encouraging as she knew what it was like to want a child and not be able to have one. We met later in life and we did manage to have one child after a few miscarriages. I know it affected her a lot more than it affected me. I was happy anyway.
All the steps to become a donor were pretty straight forward, and we met some nice people in the clinic.
I get a letter every year to tell me what has happened to my donations, and every year we get an invite to a meeting. We always try to go together. It is always interesting to hear other donor’s story’s. We had never told our daughter about what I had done, and I would think about it every time I got a letter, and when I go to a meeting I would ask how other guys told their children. Mostly they never kept it a secret.
One day I happened to leave a letter from the clinic on the table amongst the Xmas mail, and our daughter came across it ... She was really pleased! ... I was so relieved! Now we can talk about it openly, and she’s always asking me if there are any “new babies”?
We have had a photo from one of the 4 families, and we feel so lucky to have that. We don’t know if there will be more, but we know we will always be happy to help any families or children if they have questions, or if they want to meet us. I feel blessed that it is not just me who is involved, but also my wife and daughter. My daughter says she might be an egg donor when she is older! And carry on a new family tradition!