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Canvey Island resident David Richards who selflessly donated a kidney to his ailing brother is set to be honoured at a glittering appreciation dinner for the UK’s Black living donors and the sacrifices they have made for their loved ones.
David said “I donated my kidney to my younger boy as his stopped functioning. It was a no-brainer on my part and I’m happy to see him living a full life again.”
The charity Gift of Living Donation (GOLD) whose mission is to increase awareness of organ donation and living donation in particular is putting on the event at the Holiday Inn, Bloomsbury, WC1N 1HT on the 18th May.
In the sumptuous settings of this four-star hotel, living donor, their families, dignitaries, well-wishers and other invited guests will enjoy a superb meal whilst having the opportunity to share stories, anecdotes of their living donation experiences.
Dela Idowu, Gift of Living Donation ( GOLD) founder said: “It’s an opportunity to bring together black living donors in the UK and recognise and celebrate their acts of selfless kindness. It’s the first of its kind event in the UK where donors and recipients can connect, share stories, positive insights and truly wonderful outcomes and feel part of a generous altruistic community.”
Lisa Burnapp, Lead Nurse Living Donation, NHS Blood Transplant said: “I can’t think of a better way to celebrate the success of living donation and the difference it makes to people’s lives. ‘Seeing is believing’. This appreciation dinner is a fantastic opportunity to say thank you to everyone who has donated but also to inspire others who may wish to consider donating a kidney.”
The number of living organ donors from the black community is declining, mirroring the trend across all ethnicities. Last year 17 black people donated a kidney as a living donor, less than half the figure of five years earlier.
In contrast there are currently 632 black people waiting for a transplant with the vast majority of those in need of a kidney. Sadly, last year 31 patients from black backgrounds died waiting for a transplant.
The event aims to raise awareness of organ donation in Black community and the need for more Black donors especially since organ donation legislation has received its Royal Assent.
To find out more about becoming an organ donor and how to support the work of Gold please visit www.giftoflivingdonation.co.uk.