AFTER 18 months of dialysis and feeling drained of energy, Lisa Hyder of Warrnambool is full of vitality thanks to a kidney donation from her friend Shawn Delaney and lots of community support.
Mrs Hyder, 34, received the transplant last August and is revelling in the rejuvenation the new kidney has given her.
She is one a number of members of her extended family who suffer from a hereditary kidney disease, which took the life of her grandmother and her grandmother’s brother.
She is one of three members of her family to receive a donor kidney.
Her mother, Jenny De Grandi, underwent a transplant three weeks after Mrs Hyder’s last year.
Mrs Hyder’s aunt also received a kidney transplant four years ago.
Mrs De Grandi was on dialysis for eight-and-a-half years before she received a kidney from a person who had agreed to donate it upon their death.
The selfless decision of Mr Delaney, 30, to donate one of his kidneys while he was alive meant his friend did not have to wait as long.
His decision has enabled Mrs Hyder to fully enjoy raising her four-year-old daughter Lainie with her husband Dale.
“I’m going fantastic,” she said.
She said her 53-year-old mother had not been as fortunate in returning to good health after receiving her kidney but was slowly improving.
Mrs Hyder was deeply grateful not only to Mr Delaney, who had never been to hospital before donating his kidney, but also to the Warrnambool Specsavers and the Warrnambool Daybreak Rotary Club for helping her meet the medical and travel costs involved in her operation.
She had to live in Melbourne for six weeks after the operation and there were numerous trips back there afterwards.
“It was a very expensive process,” Mrs Hyder said.
She said the gift of a healthy life that Mr Delaney had given her was an example of the benefits of organ donation and she encouraged people to register to be a donor.
Specsavers Warrnambool optometrists helped meet some of Mrs Hyder’s costs through its Specsavers Community Program in which customers donate 20 cents from the price of spectacles bought at the store.
Customers can choose to donate the money to the Fred Hollows Foundation, that treats and prevents blindness, or to a community project the store chooses in partnership with the Warrnambool Rotary Daybreak Club.
Specsavers Warrnambool optometrist Mehul Patel also donated $1000 in fees from eye examinations to Mrs Hyder.
Mr Patel said a new recipient of the Warrnambool Specsavers Community Program was chosen every three months in partnership with the Daybreak club.
The next recipient will be the 4Bryn Appeal, which was set up to help Warrnambool man Bryn Murfett walk again after he was badly injured in a motor vehicle accident in Thailand in August last year.