Personal Stories

Rich Armitage

Rich, a GP living in Nottingham, donated his kidney as part of a chain, meaning three people no longer require dialysis.

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Emma: I’d do it again if I could

Emma donated her kidney to a stranger eight years ago after first seeing a story about non-directed donation on TV four years previously.

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Ruby: I have done things I’d never considered whilst on dialysis

Ruby was born with reflux of the kidneys which over time developed into renal failure. She had her first dialysis session on her 10th birthday in 2002. I was on peritoneal dialysis for six years before I contracted a fungal infection called peritonitis which meant I had to switch to hemodialysis at the age of […]

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Rachel: Donating at Christmas was a great time to be looked after!

Before teacher Rachel gave her spare kidney to someone she didn’t know, she already knew rather more than she wanted about the process. Her introduction came through a friend who worked on the dialysis ward in a Nottingham hospital and through whom she had learnt how unpleasant that is. But then, out of the blue, […]

Tony Burgess

Tony Burgess talks about his decision to donate a kidney to a stranger as a Christmas gift 2012.

Helen Marston

Helen’s husband was initially horrified when he heard about her plans to donate a kidney.

Di Franks

After donating a kidney, Di set up a website:

John Fletcher

“The whole thing has been life-enriching beyond anything that I could ever describe. Of all the things I have done in my life, donating a kidney to a stranger has been the happiest. I cannot recommend it strongly enough.”

Sanjiv Gohil

Sanjiv donated a kidney at the Royal Free Hospital in London and says once the idea entered his head, he was always going to do it!

Viv Calderbank

Viv is a graphic designer who lives in Cornwall. She donated a kidney in 2011.

Simon Swailes

Simon, who is a minister of a church, says donating a kidney to a stranger is something that anyone of faith or no faith should consider doing.  

Liza Schuster

Liza says donating a kidney didn’t necessarily make a difference to her life but it has made a huge difference to somebody else.

Clare Bolitho

Clare donated her kidney to a stranger with the main aim being to help them recipient to “restart” their life.

Matilda Hall

When self-proclaimed ‘do-er’ Matilda heard a radio item about living kidney donation she said, “that’s something I can do” and a little time after she had given one of her kidneys to a stranger! Matilda sums up her experience by saying “it was enormous fun.”

Barbara Ryder

Barbara Ryder donated a kidney in 2007. She was the second person to donate anonymously to a stranger on the transplant waiting list since the law was changed to allow this in 2006.  

Nicholas Crace

Nicholas, who is 83, donated a kidney in 2012. He is the UK’s oldest altruistic donor.

David Hemmings

David is a retired civil servant and magistrate who lives in Devon. He says donating a kidney to a stranger was as much of a reward to him than it was for the recipient.

Kay Mason

Until 2006, all living kidney donors were either relatives or friends of people who received a kidney transplant. In 2006, guidance under the new Human Tissue Act stated that altruistic kidney donation was permitted. Non-directed donation, sometimes also known as altruistic donation, is the term that describes a donation that is given without knowledge of […]

Philippa James

Philippa and her daughter have both donated kidneys altruistically.

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Nicholas: it was an easy decision to make

Nicholas Crace is a former charity director from Hampshire, gave a kidney to a stranger in spring, 2012. He was, at the time, the oldest person in the UK to have done so at aged 83 – although there have now been older donors. Nicholas Crace had good health and no dependents when his wife, […]

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Chris: the difference has been incredible

Chris received a kidney from an altruistic donor after waiting more than three years. My transplant operation gave me back the  joy of life. I had got used to life on dialysis and thought I was getting on all right. I was surrounded by people in the same position and had become almost institutionalised. I […]

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Jim: Dialysis affects many parts of your life

Jim, from Surrey, describes what it  was like waiting for a transplant. Jim had to have a kidney transplant because of a disease called Henoch-Schönlein  purpura (inflammation of the blood vessels), which he developed in his late  30s. In fact, he has had two transplants, because the first one failed after less than a year. […]

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David: I felt better than I had in a number of years

David, from Devon, a retired civil servant and lay magistrate, donated a kidney in 2010 at the age of 67.   Probably the most frequent question I have been  asked has been, “Why?” For me, this was fairly simple and straightforward; I  believe that if you are in a position to help someone else less […]