Best of luck to Transplant Team Ireland and Cavan native Stephen Smith representing Ireland at the European Transplant and Dialysis Games in Finland from July 10th – 17th. Stephen (front row, 2nd from right) has alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency and had a successful lung transplant in the Mater Hospital in Dublin in November 2013.
He has become a passionate advocate for organ donation since his transplant. Stephen regularly visits schools and GAA clubs in Cavan speaking about the importance of carrying an organ donor card and of discussing the issue with your family. Stephen appeared on RTE TV in December of 2014 in a Science Squad special on Alpha-1 which can be viewed here.
The European Transplant and Dialysis Games involve over 500 athletes from 25 countries. Transplant Team Ireland is made up of athletes who have received lung, liver, kidney, and pancreas transplants. The main objective for team members is to embrace life and promote organ donation, some returning team members will be defending European titles. Athletes will compete in their respective age categories in the following events: badminton, tennis, cycling, darts, golf, petanque, swimming, table tennis, ten pin bowling, mini-marathon, and track and field. You can follow the team’s exploits here.
For an organ donor card freetext the word DONOR to 50050 or visit http://www.ika.ie/card. It is also possible to download an organ donor card on smartphones by searching for “Donor Ecard”.