Athlete Karen Barrett is selected for World Transplant Games

Karen Barrett SUS-181128-142102001
Karen Barrett SUS-181128-142102001

Crawley’s Karen Barrett has been selected to represent Team Great Britain for the World Transplant Games 2019

Transplant Sport UK (TS) are delighted to announce the squad that will be representing Great Britain and NI at the World Transplant Games in 2019.

The team which is the largest ever with more than 330 transplant athletes, including 40 juniors, live donors and many more supporters, will descend on Newcastle and Gateshead.

40 per cent of the team are new members and all have been selected following their success at this year’s Westfield Health British Transplant Games in Birmingham.

They have all survived either a heart, lung, kidney, pancreas, liver, small bowel or bone marrow transplant. They come from all parts of the UK. One of these is local athlete Karen Barrett from Crawley who had a kidney transplant two years ago.

Karen said: “It will be an honour to represent Great Britain at the games following being selected after taking part in the British Transplant Games in August where I won a gold medal for ten pin bowling. I would not have been able to take part in either the British or forthcoming World Games if it had not been for the generous gift my husband Roger, gave to me when he donated one of his kidneys.”

The World Transplant Games take place every two years, supported by the International Olympic Committee.

It represents the largest organ donor awareness event in the world, featuring 17 sporting events. Team GB and NI will join over 1,000 other transplant athletes from 70 countries across the globe. Lynne Holt, team manager said: “We are thrilled to announce our team and welcome the new faces to our squad. We aim to exceed the gold medals we won in Malaga in 2017, and to win the trophy for the best team.

“They certainly deserve the same recognition as the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

“It is always a little daunting competing at the World Transplant Games for the first time, but with the help of those who have been before, together with the coaches, captains, management and medical team, the experience will ultimately be rewarding.

“Selection on to our team is just the beginning. It is an enormous commitment of both time and money.

“The next ten months will be busy for the athletes, keeping fit, regularly training doing publicity and trying to raise the £1,000 per person to get there.

However, the opportunity to compete in front of the home crowd, celebrate life and in doing so, paying tribute to their donors, is the goal.”

Each athlete, to keep their place on the team, is required to attend a minimum of two out of the three training meets.

The first three team meetings take place in October at the University of Warwick.

Karen added: “Horsham firm PDT Solicitors, who I work for, are sponsoring myself and my husband, Roger, in attending the games and I would like to thank them for their support.”