An update on the Living Kidney Donor Programme

Give a Kidney has joined forces with Kidney Research UK  to deliver the Robert Dangoor Partnership for Living Kidney Donation, made possible by businessman and philanthropist David Dangoor CBE. David is particularly invested in raising awareness of living kidney donation having previously donated a kidney to his brother Robert.

The programme has been created to raise awareness and encourage more people to consider donating a kidney during their lifetime. The programme will be working closely with support from NHS Blood and Transplant.

Together, the two charities will endeavour to help more people understand what it means to be a living donor, as well as supporting and guiding them throughout their donation journey.

The Need for Living Kidney Donation

Worldwide, kidney disease is the tenth most common cause of death. The number of people developing kidney disease in the UK is growing significantly, driven by risk factors such as diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure, alongside health and economic inequalities. Despite ongoing work to encourage kidney donation from both living and deceased donors, around six people die each week in the UK waiting for a transplant.

A kidney transplant is the very best treatment option for people with end-stage kidney disease, however, people wait an average of three years for a transplant. For many, the wait is even longer than that.

Enabling more transplants could help patients with kidney failure to come off or avoid life-limiting dialysis treatment, whilst a Kidney Research UK report published in 2023 found that increasing rates of transplantation, specifically from living donors, would not only improve outcomes for patients but would also be cost-saving for the NHS.

For a kidney transplant to be successful, a potential donor needs to be a suitable blood and tissue match for the recipient. The chance of finding a suitable match for people on the deceased donor transplant list is higher from a donor of the same ethnicity. Currently, people from Black and Asian backgrounds are more likely to need a transplant but less likely to donate, so patients often wait longer for a suitable donor to be found. Living donation enables potential donors to come forward and be tested, increasing the opportunities for everyone waiting for a transplant.

Impact of the initiative

The Robert Dangoor Partnership for Living Kidney Donation will launch in January 2024 with a portal to help support people who want to learn more about living kidney donation. The website will take prospective donors and their families through each stage of their donation journey, from the first stages of considering donating through to their surgery and support after leaving the hospital.

To accompany the new site, a nationwide promotional campaign will be launched to further raise awareness of living kidney donation.

The campaign will highlight the impact that donations have on recipients and their lives, sharing stories and experiences of previous donors and healthcare professionals.

About David Dangoor

David Dangoor CBE is a British businessman and philanthropist. He spent his early life in Baghdad as part of Iraq’s Jewish community, arriving in the UK with his parents and his brothers in the 1960s, where he was educated at Carmel College and Imperial College London.

He then worked as a systems analyst at IBM, before joining the family property business.

David’s philanthropy is focused on healthcare/medicine, education and promoting inter-faith harmony.

In 2019 David donated a kidney to his brother Robert, whose kidneys had been damaged by medication for another illness. Sadly, Robert died in 2022 and David and his family wanted to do something positive in his memory.

Discussing the project, David Dangoor said: “The growing rate of kidney disease here in the UK and across the world means that every day, lives are lost to this awful condition.

“Having donated a kidney to my brother, I know first-hand that it is perfectly possible to do this and to carry on living a normal life.

“Through this programme, I hope that more people can learn about the possibilities of living donation and may be inspired to take that step and change the life of someone living with kidney disease. Our ultimate vision is that no one should die waiting for a kidney.”

Get involved

The Robert Dangoor Living Kidney Donor Programme wouldn’t be possible without the help and experience of previous living kidney donors and supporters of the cause.

More information will be available early in 2024 on how you can contact the programme team and support this life-saving cause.