1. ITV Report

Mother and son duo take part in World Transplant Games as donor and recipient

  • World Transplant Games: hosted by Newcastle and Gateshead between 17-24 August 2019.

The World Transplant Games are coming to the North East this summer. Celebrated as the second chance of life, the Games demonstrate the success of transplant surgery and promote awareness of organ and tissue donation.

This year 2,237 athletes from 60 countries will be taking part in 15 sports across Tyneside and Wearside. Events include archery, athletics, tennis and even a virtual triathlon.

A North Tyneside mother says she's "so proud" to compete alongside her son after her donated organ saved his life.

In 2010, Gill Childs, from Whitley Bay, gave her kidney to son Ryan Dobinson. He was just 15-years-old when his kidney began to fail.

Nine years later, they're ready to take on the World Transplant Games together, in Newcastle.

The organ donor duo are competing in separate events Credit: Family photo

Ryan's strength is the javelin and he'll be going for a world record when he competes later this month, while mother Gill is hoping for a medal in the 5k road race.

I would hate to be running against him or throwing the javelin against him...

It would be lovely to watch him and then he comes to watch me and supports me as well and I just think it is a lovely event that donor and recipient there together both competing - just so proud, so emotional.

– Gill Childs
Ryan was gifted his mother's kidney in 2010 Credit: Family photo

Ryan was born with a condition called dysplastic kidneys, meaning they didn't function properly after he was born.

It was then discovered Ryan had a 1 in 20,000 chance of finding a tissue match - but mum Gill was one. She offered him "the best gift" and he underwent surgery that changed him overnight.

Gill said, "there was no other choice really and I wouldn't have had it any other way."

My childhood wasn't like a normal one. I was in and out of hospital all the time, couldn't eat certain foods, constantly on medication day and night and it was weird trying to explain to my friends what was actually wrong because I didn't really understand what the problem was.

– Ryan Dobinson

This is a mother and son who relish life and the challenges of representing their country - and they say they couldn't be prouder of each other.

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