22 September 2023

South Yorkshire Mayor welcomes cyclists on the third stop of their Transplant Tour

South Yorkshire Mayor, Oliver Coppard alongside Ed Clancy, former professional track and road bicycle racer, welcomed a group of cyclists on the third stop of their 500-mile Transplant Tour from Edinburgh to Oxford as they called at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, during Organ Donation Week. The cycle is as part of a charity fundraising initiative to raise awareness of living kidney donation.

The team includes living kidney donors and transplant recipients and aims to raise £20,000 for Give a Kidney, a charity that promotes awareness of non-directed kidney donation - where someone donates one of their two healthy kidneys anonymously to someone on the NHS transplant waiting list.

Mr Coppard, Ed Clancy and staff at the transplant unit at the Northern General welcomed the cyclists’ arrival at noon and witnessed the passing of the team baton from a kidney donor to a recipient, symbolising the giving and receiving of a kidney.

Dennis Carver of Funraising Tours, who previously donated a kidney to a stranger, has organised the charity cycle. He said: “As a living donor, I knew I couldn’t donate another kidney, so I have drawn on my previous experience in organising long-distance charity cycle rides to raise funds for Give a Kidney and promote awareness. I also want to show others that it is very possible to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle after donating one of your kidneys.”

Jan Shorrock, Executive Officer of Give a Kidney, said: “As a small charity we are extremely grateful to this group of cyclists and to everyone who helps to raise awareness of living kidney donation. There are currently more than 5,000 people on the waiting list for a kidney transplant in the UK, and around 250 people die each year in need of a kidney transplant. Humans only need one kidney so if more healthy people came forward to give theirs, more lives could be saved. In the UK almost 1000 people have donated a kidney to someone they do not know and we hope to encourage more people to consider sharing their spare! We wish all the cyclists on the Transplant Tour every success in their tough challenge.”

Caroline Basarab-Horwath, Living Donor Transplant Coordinator at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust said: “A huge congratulations and thank you to the cyclists on the exceptional challenge they have taken so far, which reflects the exceptional gift of organ donation. It has been fantastic to see so many people here supporting them and helping raise awareness of non-directed altruistic donation including our incredible living donors and transplant recipients, the Sheffield Area Kidney Association, who have kindly provided lunch and refreshments for the cyclists and Sunshine Day Nursery who have drawn wonderful pictures of support.”

For more information on non-directed living kidney donation please visit www.giveakidney.org

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