If you are a regular follower of this blog you may recall me telling you that a year ago my husband, John, met someone who suffered from full kidney failure. Pieter had been on dialysis for 4 years and on the Organ Donor’s List. John was so moved by his suffering and story, that he decided to donate one of his kidneys to him. Over the months of compatibility tests they became the best of friends, during which time we learnt that they were a very good match. The transplant operation was on 27 November 2012 and went extremely well. John’s donation also made history by being the first directed altruistic organ donation in the UK.
It’s now 7 months later and they are both in very good health. Pieter wants to pay it forward and has recently joined the Kidney Research UK Development Board who are actively organising events to help raise much needed funds to combat kidney disease, and to raise awareness. Pieter’s goal is to raise at least £25,000 in 3 years, and we’ve offered to help. John and Pieter also hope to encourage altruists to seriously consider saving a life by donating a kidney (or at least to join the organ donors register) by documenting every step of the kidney donation and transplant journey on their blog.
On Sunday 14 July Pieter, Pieter’s wife Lizelle, their dog Trinity, John and I will be taking part in the London Bridges Walk in aid of Kidney Research UK. Although anyone can enter, many of the participants will have varying stages of kidney disease / failure or be someone that has donated a kidney. I will be extremely grateful if you would be kind enough help us support this very worthy cause by sponsoring us with donations, however small.
As you can see from the poster, you can donate by texting UKGO88 £5 to 70070, or by visiting Pieter’s justgiving page www.justgiving.com/229days
To put things into perspective, results from a survey, carried out by Usurv, indicate that while 87 per cent of people in the UK would accept a transplant if told they needed one, only one in three are actually on the organ donor register.
Around 50,000 people in the UK require some form of ongoing treatment for kidney failure, of which approximately 7,000 are currently waiting for a kidney transplant – accounting for 90 per cent of all patients on the NHS’s transplant waiting list.
With more than three million people in the UK at risk from kidney disease and an aging population expected to further increase demand for donor organs in years to come, Kidney Research UK fears demand for organs will continue to outstrip supply – placing the lives of more and more kidney patients at risk.
Your support will mean a lot to us and to Kidney Research UK.