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We are a small charity, trying to make a big difference to the lives of those living with kidney disease in need of a transplant.

The charity is run by volunteers, with just two part-time staff.  We don’t have expensive offices or lots of equipment, so the money we raise goes directly to help raise awareness of non-directed living donation. If you would like to help us meet our running costs, every penny really does count. You can make a donation by clicking on the link below,which will transfer you to our fundraising partners, Charity Choice. If you are a UK taxpayer, please consider Gift-aiding your donation, which allows us to claim back the tax on the amount you donate. Many thanks for your support.

Support US

There are many ways that you can get involved with or show support to Give a Kidney.

Share your story

If you are a non-directed donor in the UK, or have received a kidney, would you be willing to share your story through the media, our and our partners’ websites and through social media? Stories from those affected by kidney donation are the most effective way of telling more people about donation. If you can help, please get in touch with us via our contact form and we can advise you. Please also follow us on Twitter and Facebook and share and comment on our posts which helps to get them seen by more people.

Become an ambassador

We have a low key, Give a Kidney Ambassador programme which helps support you to help raise awareness of non-directed donation. We are a small charity so cannot offer the support that some large charities can help with ideas and provide materials, statistics, slide templates, promotion ideas etc if you are able to speak to groups or attend events in your local communities on our behalf. Please get in touch with us if you’d like to find out more.

Take up a Challenge!

Are you up for a challenge?

Simply decide which challenge you want to take on, sign up for it and create an online fundraising page on justgiving.com/giveakidney You then email the link to colleagues and friends and you will be amazed by how much you can raise!

If you enjoy running, there is now a huge number of ‘open’ running events up and down the country, from 5k and 10k runs to full marathons. This means that you simply register for a place and then raise funds for the charity of your choice.

Some, such as the London Marathon, are very over-subscribed, so timing is vital if you are to have a chance in the ballot. Because of the expense involved in doing so, Give a Kidney doesn’t currently buy places in any running events, so we rely on people getting their own place by registering in this way.

More recently fashionable are obstacle courses and muddy challenges, but they’re not for the faint-hearted! nuclear-races.co.uk is just one example, with events at their venue in Brentwood, Essex. There’s also Tough Guy in the West Midlands – and many more. You are encouraged by the organisers to get a team together so that you can help each other round the course.

If you have a bit more time and would prefer something overseas, we have partnered with Classic Challenge which organises a wide range of charity challenges, including Cycle London to Paris, Climb Kilimanjaro and Bike Across the Andes – but there are many more.

Our Administrator will be happy to provide any fundraising materials you might find useful, including sponsorship forms, information leaflets, t-shirts and more! Just email info@giveakidney.org  to let us know what you have planned.

Raise awareness

There are still many people who do not know that non-directed living kidney donation is possible. Please help us spread the word by talking about living donation with your friends and family, work colleagues, social networks. You may also like to consider if you could talk to local groups (Rotary, WI’s, faith groups, U3A etc) about it or writing an article for any local newsletters, alumni magazines, newsletters for social groups that you are involved with etc. We can supply information leaflets, newsletters, statistics and draft slides for you if required, please just use our contact form to get in touch.

Support us with a financial donation

You may not feel that donating a kidney is something you are able to do but you may wish to support us by making a contribution to our running costs, which go directly to raising awareness of non-directed kidney donation in the UK. We are a small charity, trying to make a big difference to the lives of those living with kidney disease in need of a transplant.

The charity is run by volunteers, with just two part-time staff.  We don’t have expensive offices or lots of equipment, so the money we raise goes directly to help raise awareness of non-directed living donation. If you would like to help us meet our running costs, every penny really does count. You can make a donation by clicking on the link below,which will transfer you to our fundraising partners, Virgin Money Giving. If you are a UK taxpayer, please consider Gift-aiding your donation, which allows us to claim back the tax on the amount you donate. Many thanks for your support.  Click here to donate an amount of your choice today. You can check you are on a secure site by looking for the small padlock at the beginning of the address bar once you click the link.

Give a scrap car!

Do you own a vehicle that you want to sell or get rid of? Then please think about donating it to us through Giveacar!
Giveacar raises money for UK charities by scrapping and selling old cars. They provide a nationwide FREE service which:
Arranges the collection of the vehicle from your home for FREE; and
Recycles it at an authorised facility or sends it to auction (depending on its age and condition).
Scrap donations raise about £35 for the charity (depending on the price of metal) while auction cars can raise much more.
To arrange the donation of a car, visit www.giveacar.co.uk or call 020 7736 4242, quoting (Give a Kidney) as your preferred charity.

Donate!

If you feel that donating a kidney is something you could consider, that is great. However, we recognise that not everyone will feel it is something they could or should do, and some people will not able to donate, even if they want to. If you’d still like to do something there are many other ways you can help people in need. Most of us would be willing to accept an organ if we needed one, but there are many people who are still not on the Organ Donor Register, allowing your organs to be used after your death to help people in need. If you have not already done so, please sign the Organ Donor Register now, and don’t forget to discuss your wishes with your closest relatives and friends. You may also like to consider giving blood or joining the Anthony Nolan Register to donate Stem Cells to help beat Blood Cancer.

Many thanks for any support you can give.

Latest Newsletter Out Now

Our Autumn/Winter Newsletter is out now. Click here to read it

AGM and Conference – 17 January, London

Give a Kidney’s AGM & Conference will take place on Saturday 17 January, 2015 at the DoubleTree by Hilton, West End, London. As well as reviewing the last year, we’ll be discussing plans for the future. It’s a great opportunity to meet non-directed donors as well as key medical staff, and this year there’ll be a special guest in the form of Richard Pitman, former jockey and BBC presenter. There’s also a free lunch! If you are a kidney donor, recipient, considering donating or just want to find our more you will be most welcome. The event is free but please book your place by clicking here. We hope to see you there.

Latest statistics on non-directed donation

Latest statistics from NHSBT: 10 more non-directed kidney donations took place in the UK during November 2014. This brings the total number so far to 356! Click on the graph below to see a larger version. Congratulations and well done to all the donors and their recipients. We wish you all speedy recoveries.

Donations chart at Nov 14

Watch two Sky News Interviews with non-directed donors

Watch two new films:

Sanjiv Gohil talks about his decision to give a kidney to a someone he does not know.

Extraordinary people who have donated kidneys to people they do not know tell why they did it

Altruistic or non-directed donation is the giving of a kidney, from a living person, to a stranger who has kidney failure.

We aim to publicise why more living kidney donors are needed and to support people who are considering this type of donation.

Patients with kidney failure have the option of dialysis or transplantation when both their kidneys fail. A kidney transplant can provide patients with freedom from regular dialysis, a better quality of life and longer life expectancy. Unfortunately, very few patients have someone who can give them a kidney, and on average most patients have to wait on dialysis for two to three years before a kidney becomes available on the national deceased donor transplant waiting list.

Although the UK performs more than 2500 kidney transplantations a year, there are around 6000 people waiting for a kidney transplant, and around 300 people in the UK die each year in need of a kidney.

Despite the shortage of donors, we know that many people would be willing to donate a kidney if they knew how to do so.

Our aim is to raise awareness of kidney donation and support people through the giving process.

How do I go about donating a kidney?

If you are considering donating a kidney to someone you don’t know, thank you – you may be giving someone the greatest gift they could wish for. However, it’s a big decision and you need to be fully informed about the procedure and the risks of donating a kidney as a living donor before you go ahead. We suggest you take a look around this site and at other available information and links. Once you’ve done that, if you’d like to find out more, the first step to do is to contact the Living Donor Co-ordinator Nursing Team in your closest kidney transplant centre. It may seem a big step to call someone, but every kidney transplant centre in the UK has a team like this and they are there to help answer your questions and talk you through the process.  Contacting them does not commit you to anything – it’s just an initial chat. They will be able to send you more information and, if you wish to, you will be able to chat with them about how you can be assessed as a donor in your local area.

You can contact any transplant centre, but it is a good idea to start with the one that is closest to where you live, as it is likely to be more convenient for you to attend appointments locally.

If you would like to discuss the possibility of donating a kidney before you contact a transplant centre (a link to a list of contact numbers is shown at the bottom of this page), you can also contact Give a Kidney – one’s enough. Click here to contact us. We can put you in touch with previous donors for a non-medical chat. They can tell you about their personal experience of donating and help to answer any initial questions you may have. They will not be able to provide any medical advice.

You may also wish to read NHS Blood and Transplant’s Information leaflet – Could I be a Living Donor?

Who can give?

In England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland any healthy adult can volunteer to give a kidney.

In Scotland only people over 16 years of age can be legally considered as living kidney donors. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, no minimum age limit is specified under the Human Tissue Act 2004, but only people over the age of 18 will be considered as non-directed (altruistic) donors. Living donation from children is only considered in exceptional circumstances, and donation from them would require court approval.

There is no upper-age limit for donating a kidney. Donors are assessed individually to ensure they are healthy enough to donate. There have been a number of living donors in their 80s!

Unlike donating blood, being a gay man does not prevent you from being assessed as a potential kidney donor.

Assessing your suitability as a donor

In order to be accepted as a donor you will need to go through a number of tests to ensure it is as safe as possible and is sensible for you to donate. The assessment procedure can take anything from three to 18 months and involved a lot of tests including blood tests, xrays, scans and physical and psychological assessments. Your Living Donor Coordinator will talk to you in more details about these tests and will be able to answer any questions you may have about them.

If the assessment process shows that you are physically and psychologically healthy, you will then see an assessor from the Human Tissue Authority. The assessor’s job is to make sure that you have fully understood all the implications of giving a kidney and that you are not being paid to donate (which is illegal) or being put under pressure to do so. They will also ask you to prove your identity.

All donors are now entered into an altruistic donor chain which enables two or three transplants to be made possible as a result of your donation – more details about this will be discussed with you during the process. The exception to this is if there is a matching high priority patient on the waiting list. You will not be able to choose whom the kidney is given to or to put any limitation on who receives the kidney.

After your operation, your kidney will be taken away immediately for transplantation at the earliest possible time. If the recipient lives at a considerable distance, the kidney is likely to be flown to its destination.

The doctors at your hospital may be able to tell you how the recipient is progressing with your kidney, but you will not be told their identity or any further information. After a while, should you wish to, you may be able to write an anonymous letter to the recipient, which would be sent anonymously via your transplant coordinator, and they may write back to let you know how they are doing. You are unlikely to ever know the identity of your recipient but you will have the knowledge that you have given someone in great need a very precious gift of a well-matched and healthy kidney.

A full list of transplant centres and contact telephone numbers is given on the NHS Blood and Transplant website here. 

If you live far from your nearest transplant unit, it is sometimes possible to have most of the assessment process done at a hospital closer to where you live if that is more convenient for you.