One group taking part was a sister duo, Robin and Sara Mallia. The event was an important one to them given Sara had donated a kidney to Robin.
“I had a birth defect when I was born and they fixed that when I was eight. Just over time they found that there was scarring on the kidneys. When I was 21 they found out that I had 29 per cent kidney function and so we started the transplant process then. I was 22 when I received my kidney from my sister,” Robin explained.
For Sara, donating a kidney wasn’t a difficult decision, however she did confess to feeling a bit on edge leading up to the procedure.
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“To me donating was easy. It was live with my sister or live without her. I wasn’t ready to live without her. I was really nervous when I was having the IV put in my arm and wheeled down the hall, that’s when it really hit me.”
Coordinator of the Fort St. John event Dana Lloyd was very happy with the support at the event and noted that the money raised goes towards a number of issues related to kidney disease.
“We’re in our sixth year and raising awareness and letting the public know that we are a disease that needs a little help with out fundraising. Sponsorship is greatly appreciated, it helps with many things like after transplant care. It’s overwhelming to see the support we can get,” she said.
There’s a number of things people can do to help minimize their risk of kidney disease including monitoring blood sugar level, keeping an eye on blood pressure, reducing salt intake, not smoking, refraining from regular use of ibuprofen, and living an active and healthy life.
The Kidney Walk raised $995 at the event and $3,945 was raised in total during the campaign.