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From operating table to podium – how to become the fastest altruistic kidney donor on the planet.

The decision to donate a kidney to a stranger is not something that Dr Gill Owens took lightly. However, after 12 months of physical and psychological testing to ensure she was fit to donate, on 19 March 2015 Gill found herself on an operating table at the Freeman Hospital. 

Gill had her left kidney removed which was then packed up and flown to the other side of the country to be transplanted into a person who she did not know and had never met. Two years later Gill represented Great Britain and Northern Ireland at the World Transplant Games in Malaga. This was the first World Games that donors were allowed to compete in and Gill jumped at the chance of representing her country. 

A sprinter at school, the obvious event for Gill was the 100 meters sprint. Through the support she received from Teesside University, Gill came home from the games with a silver medal and a new world record. The gold went to a Spanish girl who had donated bone marrow to her twin sister, allowing Gill to claim the world record and the title of world’s fastest altruistic kidney donor and world’s fastest female kidney donor.

Come along to hear about Gill’s inspirational story. 

Please note that booking is required for this event via Teesside University

Teesside University

Teesside University is dynamic and energetic, celebrating over 80 years of innovative and inspiring education. Over £135-m investment on campus provides top class facilities for students. Teesside offers a wide range of popular subjects from animation to law, business and health to media and forensic science.

Officially opened in 1930 as Constantine Technical College by the then Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VIII, to support Middlesbrough’s booming engineering and shipping industries. 

We have almost 30,000 full- and part-time students.Overseas students make up 5.6% of the students studying on campus at Teesside, with a further 1.6% coming from the EU (excluding transnational activity). 43% of students are male, 57% female.Teesside has a community of over 1,400 students from overseas (full-time, including EU).