Harrogate double transplant recipient throws charity dinner for organ donation

A fundraising stalwart from Harrogate has announced plans to throw a charity gala to raise money for organ donation, after receiving a life-saving transplant.

Wednesday, 20th December 2017, 5:34 pm
Updated Wednesday, 3rd January 2018, 4:25 pm
Mark Smith with Harrogate and Knaresborough MP, Andrew Jones.

Mark Smith has raised money for Kidney Care UK every year since 2015, after he received a kidney and pancreas transplant operation which saved his life.

A life-long diabetic, Mark was suffering organ failure, but after his operation Mark reached out to the family of his organ donor to thank them.

Inspired by his experience, Mark has since raised money by climbing the Yorkshire Three Peaks, and walking the length of Hadrian's Wall with his donor's mother.

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But as a result of his diabetes, Mark has suffered a foot injury through nerve damage, leaving him unable to do another physically-challenging fundraiser for another year.

Mark said: "I haven't been able to walk as much, but I still wanted to raise money and raise awareness and I believe you shouldn't really let anything hold you back.

"The idea just popped into my head one day - why don't I do a charity dinner to raise awareness. I want to build on what I've done in the past and keep pushing."

The charity dinner will be held at the Old Swan Hotel in Harrogate on October 26, 2018 with tickets available to purchase now.

Mark already has the backing of several local businesses, and the town's MP, Andrew Jones, who has shown his support for Mark's fundraising efforts in the past too.

With plans to hold a raffle and an auction, Mark is appealing to anyone who can help in the district, whether it be through donating prizes, providing sponsorship or even assistance in promoting the event with brochures and flyers.

All money raised through ticket sales and the raffle and auction will be split between Kidney Care UK and the local organ donation committee at Harrogate District Hospital.

If you think you could help in any way, please contact Mark at [email protected]