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Doctor joins our Step into Christmas challenge to say thanks for a life-saving kidney transplant from his brother in law

17 December 2020

An Edinburgh doctor is running every day in December in a fundraising celebration of his own successful kidney transplant three months ago. 

Gavin Chapman is joining our Step into Christmas challenge to fund life-saving research into kidney disease and has already raised more than £5,700. 

The 27-year old doctor, who works in south east Scotland, is being joined in the challenge by his brother-in-law, Stuart, who donated a kidney to him in September

Dr Gavin Chapman
Dr Gavin Chapman with his brother in law Stuart

Also joining the challenge is his girlfriend Hannah and brother Andrew. 

“Since my brother-in-law Stuart donated a kidney to me, the difference to me has been huge. I’m less tired, I sleep better, and I have a better appetite,” Gavin said. 

“It means a huge deal that Stuart gave me the opportunity to continue living a normal life, so I never had to endure dialysis. 

After transplant I have more energy

Gavin was diagnosed with kidney disease in 2006 at the age of 12. 

Since then his kidney function slowly deteriorated and by the beginning of 2020, he was in stage five of chronic kidney disease. 

Gavin was among the first people to have a kidney transplant once the Covid lockdown living-donor restrictions were lifted. Since surgery he has recovered well and says he feels like a new person. 

“Before surgery I thought I was ok, it was not until after getting Stuart’s kidney, I realised I wasn’t! 

“I now have more energy and generally feel better in myself. I had taken it for granted that I was exhausted most of the time.” 

It’s been a tough year for charities, with the pandemic creating a terrible financial impact, so Gavin was determined to do his bit to help support a cause which is close to him. 

As a doctor I know research is everything

“Research is everything,” he said. “Being a doctor, I’ve read a lot around the subject as it comes naturally to me to want to know more. I’ve had experience looking after patients with chronic conditions, including chronic kidney disease.  

“Dialysis hasn’t advanced much over the years and treatment for kidney disease continues for the most part to be focused on delaying progression of disease rather than curative treatment.  

With this in mind, research is essential to help further our understanding and develop treatments for the many different causes of kidney disease.” 

“I feel very lucky that I didn’t have to go down the dialysis route, so my motivation for my Step into Christmas challenge is to support research to help others. 

“We’ve set ourselves the challenge of running every day in December. We can't promise we will run particularly quickly, but we will run as far and as fast as we can!  

So far the challenge has been going well and we are so grateful to all the generous support people have given us, which is a huge motivation in itself for us to push on and run as far as possible!” 

You can support Gavin’s challenge by following his JustGiving page here: 

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