The Irish Kidney Association’s family ‘Run for a Life’ fun run takes place at Corkagh Park in Clondalkin this Saturday at 12 noon in support of organ donation and to raise funds for the Irish Kidney Association. Several participants will take part in the annual event to honour their organ donors while others, including some who are awaiting transplants, will take part to help raise awareness about the vital importance of organ donation.
RTÉ’s Vivienne Traynor, ambassador for Organ Donor Awareness 2016, will run in solidarity along with her extended family. Vivienne’s husband Justin Treacy and their two children, and her nephew Martin Traynor whom she donated a kidney to, will also be there to support their relative Michaela Delany (age 16) from Clondalkin who is waiting for a second kidney transplant, having undergone her first when she was two years old. Michaela, who will be sitting her Junior Cert exams this June, will also walk in the event and her parents Dermot (first cousin of Vivienne) and Liz will be there to support her. Dermot has scooped first place in the 10km event at three previous Run for a Life events. This year he will be walking the course due to a sports injury. Moved by Michaela’s plight, a large group of Dermot’s friends who are members of Tallaght Athletics Club have registered to run in the event.
Also taking part will be Janice Moran (27) from Drimnagh who receives 10 hourly nightly dialysis as well as Italian native Alessandra Pollicini who has taken part in the event since before her husband received a kidney transplant. She along with some running mates from her local running club in Balbriggan will run the 10km distance at the event to celebrate her husband’s gift of life.
One of the oldest transplant recipients to register for this year’s ‘Run for a Life’ is 69 year old Philip Kavanagh from Arklow who received his liver transplant in 2008. Philip is a member of Transplant Team Ireland and he will take part in the European Transplant and Dialysis Sports Championships in Finland in July. Some other members attending the fun run will include Team Captain Harry Ward from Baldoyle and dialysis athletes Alan Gleeson and Patrick O’Connor form Kerry.
Prof. Jim Egan, Director of Organ Donation and Transplant Ireland (ODTI) a regular participant at the annual event will take part again this year along with his ODTI colleague, organ donor co-ordinator Fiadhna McMonagle.
The event is sponsored by Astellas Pharma Co. Ltd. People have the option of walking, jogging or running competitively in either a chip timed 2.5km, 5km or 10km distance.