Watch Selena Gomez dedicate an award to the friend who saved her life.
More than 116,000 people are currently waiting for an organ transplant.
Earlier this year, when Selena Gomez needed a kidney transplant, one of her friends came through with a life-saving donation.
Actress Francia Raisa was starring on ABC Family's "The Secret Life of the American Teenager" when she met Gomez during a children's hospital event in 2007, and they have remained close friends ever since. In 2013, Gomez underwent chemotherapy to treat lupus, something she went public with two years later. As a result of her illness and treatment, Gomez needed a new kidney.
Naturally, Raisa offered one of hers.
It was a heartwarming story that epitomizes #FriendshipGoals.
I’m very aware some of my fans had noticed I was laying low for part of the summer and questioning why I wasn’t promoting my new music, which I was extremely proud of. So I found out I needed to get a kidney transplant due to my Lupus and was recovering. It was what I needed to do for my overall health. I honestly look forward to sharing with you, soon my journey through these past several months as I have always wanted to do with you. Until then I want to publicly thank my family and incredible team of doctors for everything they have done for me prior to and post-surgery. And finally, there aren’t words to describe how I can possibly thank my beautiful friend Francia Raisa. She gave me the ultimate gift and sacrifice by donating her kidney to me. I am incredibly blessed. I love you so much sis. Lupus continues to be very misunderstood but progress is being made. For more information regarding Lupus please go to the Lupus Research Alliance website: www.lupusresearch.org/ -by grace through faith
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This week, Billboard honored Gomez with its Woman of the Year award. Tearing up as she accepted it, she gave a powerful shoutout to Raisa.
"To be honest, I think Francia should get this award because she saved my life," she said, trying not to cry. It was a really emotional moment, for Gomez, for Raisa, and for everyone watching at home and in the audience.
More than 80% of the more than 116,000 people currently on the organ transplant waiting list need a new kidney.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, a new person is added to the waiting list every 10 minutes. As just 0.3% of people die in a way that allows for their organs to be transplanted after death, living donors are necessary — though it's still important to register as an organ donor.
It's why having a friend like Raisa, someone so selfless and giving, is a true blessing.
Photo by Michael Kovac/Getty Images for Billboard.
Learn more about how you can help change a life by visiting The National Kidney Foundation's "The Big Ask, The Big Give" website.