The countdown to the 2023 British Transplant Games has officially began and a Coventry University graduate who received a life-changing organ transplant is set to compete.
Organised by Transplant Sport, the Westfield Health British Transplant Games will be coming to Coventry this year and are designed to raise awareness of the need for organ donation, encourage transplant recipients to lead active lifestyles and to show appreciation for donors and their families. The games will take place at a number of venues across the city between 27-30 July 2023.
One of those set to compete is Luke Alexander, 22, who graduated last year with a degree in Media Production from Coventry University. Luke said:
“I received a liver transplant in 2012. I wasn’t too physically fit before that, I got tired very quickly. Since receiving my transplant I’ve trekked in the Himalayas, I’ve competed at the World Transplant Games in Malaga and Newcastle and several British Transplant Games, and I’ve even set a cycling time trial world record at the World Transplant Games. None of this would have been possible without my transplant, it has been life-changing.
“I’m very excited about competing in Coventry, it’ll be great to show the city the benefits of organ donation and I think the games will have such a great atmosphere in the city, it’s a place with such an amazing community feel. I had a great time at Coventry University, I made some great friends and a lot of happy memories here, it’s been a fantastic part of my life.”
Luke added that he is planning to compete in a swimming and a sprint event when the games come to Coventry in July.
Speaking at the recent launch event, Dr Paul Harden, Chair of Transplant Sport, said:
“This event is not just about the sport, it’s about supporting those who are going through serious illness and their recovery phase.
“The games help participants to build their self-esteem and to build a normal life. I don’t think we always make the most of peer-to-peer support, but this event brings people together who have had a shared experience and it makes a big difference.
“It was a great games last time we were in Coventry in 2009 and it’s going to be a great event in 2023.”
To find out more about the British Transplant Games visit www.britishtransplantgames.co.uk