Glossary

Gametes  
this term refers to either sperm or eggs. Although not strictly gametes, embryos are commonly included in the term.
Donor offspring
Babies, children and adults who have been conceived with the help of donated gametes or embryos.
SMC
single mum by choice, i.e. single women who choose to become mothers, rather than choosing to be single!
Double donation
egg and sperm are both donated and then fertilized for implantation
Embryo donation
In the UK this is usually where surplus embryos are frozen after fertilisation, and their owners later decide not to use them themselves.  The donors may be a couple undergoing fertility treatment with their own gametes or using donated gametes. Abroad embryos may be created specifically for couples or single women who need both male and female gametes.
Egg-sharing
this scheme is offered at some clinics where women under 35 needing fertility treatment may offer half the eggs collected for donation in exchange for free or discounted treatment. Many women having fertility treatment are happy to help other women going through similar difficulties.
Altruistic Donors
are donors who give their eggs or sperm to help another couple or individual to have a child, but without needing treatment themselves.  They may receive expenses but not payment for their gametes.
Anonymous donors
are donors to whom you or your child will have no right to identifying information. Some information on the donor may be available. Since April 2005 UK donors all have to agree to be identifiable.  Most donors abroad are anonymous.
ID release donors 
are donors whose identity will be made available at a specified time to the recipient and / or the offspring
Known donors
are donors whose identity you know at the time of donation.  They may be a friend or family member and may donate at a licensed clinic or privately, outside the licensed clinic system.
Private donors 
are donors who donate outside the regulated system (either anonymously or identifiably), maybe through another organisation, or who are recruited from friends, family or otherwise privately.