Dedicated Walk For Life Fundraising Group Raise £10,500 For Hospital

An organ donor recipient and campaigner has raised £10,500 to help support Dialysis Caravans supporting patients across the Trust.

Gary Spendlove started fundraising with friend, Simon Elmore, back in 2016 to raise money and is now a lifelong friend after raising thousands for charity over six years.

Their fundraising journey started after Simon had Kidney failure at the age of 33. After undergoing several treatments and 7 years of dialysis and being declared dead three times, at last a donor was found.

“I cannot put into words the amazing change physically I have! My Donor and family have given me the chance to live again and for the first time I can now give my wife the husband she deserves.”

“I feel very privileged to have been given a new life all because of my Donor family had made the decision to give at such a time in their life.”

After going through such life changing events, Simon wanted to give back and signed up to compete in range of tournaments for the British Transplant Games. To help fundraise he has also taken o hundreds of miles in walks (despite hating walking) and even took on the challenge of walking 100 miles with a bowling ball strapped to his back.

After all his hard work, he is keen to get the message out there that organ donation is a discussion everyone should be having with their families, ahead of Organ donation week from Monday 19 – Sunday 25 September 2022. “People need to understand, being an registered organ donor isn’t the be all and end all, you still need to have that important discussion with your family now, not when it is too late.”

Simon and Gary, along with support from hundreds of friends and family, has recently raised £10,500 to donate to the hospital to help support the maintenance of dialysis machines.

The caravans which feature the dialysis machines, make a huge difference to patients and staff.

Carol Rhodes, Senior Sister in the Derby Renal Unit said “Dialysis is lifesaving treatment which our patients dialyse 3 times a week, 4 hours per session in a hospital setting and therefore infrequently have the opportunity to go away on holiday.”

The caravans are equipped to carry out dialysis treatment and enable patients to go on holiday and continue their regular lifesaving treatment.

“The caravans support patients in having a holiday, something most people take for granted. Without this resource, patients have little access to holidays away from the centre.”

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