Check out Kidney March on CTV News this week!

Source: CTV News, published Monday July 15, 2013 by Vickie Chase.

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Sept 6-8, 2013, hundreds of citizens will join together to make the boldest movement ever made in the battle against kidney disease. They will lace up their walking shoes and take on the Kidney March challenge, a three day, 100 kilometer walk, from Kananaskis to Calgary. Hosted by the Kidney Foundation of Canada, Kidney March raises awareness and funds to support kidney disease research, patient support programs, and organ donation initiatives.

Kidney disease is a lifelong, irreversible illness with no cure. 80 per cent of Canadians waiting for an organ donation are in need of a kidney, and those affected is expected to double in the next ten years.

Click here to read more.

Team Christina’s fundraising was feautured in the Medicine Hat News!

Source: Medicine Hat News – published July 22 2013, by Charles Lefebvre.


Voula Douvis has a strong motivation to take part in the 2013 Kidney March this September.

“A year ago, my daughter Christina was diagnosed with kidney disease,” she said. “Our lives have changed quite a bit.”

Christina, who is 10-years-old is now on a number of medications which affect her in different ways, and the family has to make a number of trips to the children’s hospital for regular blood tests.

The diagnosis inspired Voula to form a team with Dawn Hunt, Sonita Goehring and Lisa Perich to participate in the Kidney March from September 6-8 in Kananaskis. Douvis was out on Saturday with her team in front of Wal-Mart, holding a fundraising barbecue to raise money for the foundation leading up to the march.

Click here to read more.

Kidney Marcher shares her story in the Shawnessy Newsletter!

Source: Shawnee Evergreen – Published July, 2013 by Erin Birbeck.


Most people diagnosed with kidney disease the news comes as a surprise. They had little awareness of kidney disease until forced with the diagnosis. For local Shawnessy resident Shannon Guyett, this is not the case. Several generations of Shannon’s family have been affected by kidney disease, and she knows all too well the burden it creates. Watching both her grandfather and father die from kidney disease, and then being diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease (PKD) herself, Shannon was determined to change the fate of her family. Unfortunately, the fight against kidney disease for Shannon’s family did not stop with her. At age 13 her daughter Alyssa was diagnosed with the same disease that has drastically altered Shannon’s life. Seeking to help her daughter adapt to a life with kidney disease, Shannon came to The Kidney Foundation of Canada.

When Shannon heard about the foundation’s annual Kidney March, there was nothing stopping her from taking on the challenge of walking 100 kilometers, in 3 days, from K- Country to Calgary.

Shannon explains, “When you go from having full kidney function and living life to the fullest, to finding out your kidneys are only functioning at 28%, it’s an eye opener. I can delay kidney failure but will not be able to stop it.”

Click here to read more.

Kidney Marcher’s fundraising is featured in the Lethbridge Herald!

Source: Lethbridge Herald – Published June 29, 2013 by Simmons, Garrett.


At the age of 25, living a healthy life, the last thing Kate expected was to be diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. However, when the former Lethbridge resident experienced severe headaches that would not go away, she was shocked to learn her kidneys function had dropped to an astounding 13%. Kidney disease usually starts silently and slowly, which is why it is often referred to as the silent killer. Most patients are treated on dialysis when their kidney function reaches 15%.

Two years later, thanks to dramatic lifestyle changes and medication, Kate’s kidneys are functioning at above 20%. Kate is grateful that on some days, she almost forgets that she has kidney disease. She is dedicated to living life to the fullest, knowing that sometime in the future the investable will happen, and she will need a kidney transplant.

Click here to read more.

Kidney March is featured in the Springbank Park Newsletter!


Source: Springbank Park Patter – Published June 2013 by Erin Birbeck

Kidney March isn’t a race, it’s about doing the most you can do. What is stopping you from making a difference? On September 6 -8th, 2013 over 200 people will lace up their walking shoes to march 100 kilometers, over three days, from K-Country to Calgary, in the fourth annual Kidney March. Hosted by the Kidney Foundation of Canada, Kidney March raises awareness and funds to support kidney disease research, patient support programs, and organ donation initiatives.

Kidney disease is referred to as the “silent killer” because most people are unaware they are at risk. It is a lifelong, irreversible illness, with no cure. 80% of Canadians waiting for an organ donation are in need of a kidney, and those affected by the disease are expected to double over the next ten years. Participants involved in Kidney March, including marchers, crew members, patients, and donors are taking one step closer in the battle against kidney disease. For the millions affected by kidney disease, failure is not an option. In the past three years over $2.3 million has been raised in support of kidney disease.

Click here to read more.

Kidney March Siblings were recently featured in the Calgary Hearld!

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Source: Calgary Hearld Neighbours The Community Weekly – Published June 13, 2013 by Paula Trotter

Michelle and Jason Hofer erupt into laughter when asked if they have a close relationship. The two joke back and forth about not being able to choose our siblings before Jason tells Michelle that she’s stuck with him for a brother — and you get the sense that she is more than OK with that.

“You never think you’ll lose somebody and thankfully we haven’t lost Jason,” says Michelle, 29, the younger of the two. “Still, it’s hard.”

Jason suffers from kidney failure and is awaiting his chance at a second organ transplant. Both siblings were diagnosed with Alport syndrome, a hereditary kidney disease, when they were kids. Their mom also has Alport syndrome, but is in stable condition. The illness, however, started shutting down Jason’s kidneys when he was 16.

“It’s definitely not fair,” Michelle says of the disease that has left her with very minor symptoms to date, but has turned her brother’s life upside down. At 24, Jason suffered renal failure. He has been on dialysis for the past eight years and currently goes for dialysis three times a week, spending four hours hooked up to a machine that removes waste and excess fluid from his blood.

One of his uncles donated a kidney in 2006, but Jason’s body rejected it, despite a year’s effort to try to save the organ with trips to the hospital and medication.The drugs caused avascular necrosis, which killed the bone tissue in Jason’s hips and shoulders. At 27, he underwent his first hip replacement. His other hip was replaced a year later and his shoulder joint was replaced in between the surgeries on his hips.

“You only have two options:deal with it or don’t. And not dealing with it really isn’t much of an option,” he says.

Once a promising young hockey player, Jason, 31, now has to limit his physical activity in the hope of extending the lifespan of his artificial joints, which is why his doctor recommended that Jason not participate in the annual Kidney March this fall. So Michelle stepped up and will complete the three-day, 100-kilometre trek through Kananaskis to raise awareness for organ donation and money for the Kidney Foundation of Canada.

“He’s my big brother — he’s always been there for me,” she says. “Now it’s my turn to be there for him.”

The Kidney March kicks off Sept. 6 south of Calgary near Millarville, with participants walking about 30 kilometres each day, making their way toward the finish line at Canada Olympic Park in Calgary. Michelle has raised $1,600 so far, just past the halfway mark for the $2,200 that all participants are required to raise (her goal is $3,000). Jason has also raised an impressive $4,600 in a short amount of time. He will be volunteering at the Kidney March as a crew member so he can be on site to offer encouragement to his little sister.

“She’s doing this for me, so I’m going to be there for her.” She and her brother are most eager to raise awareness and money to fight back against a disease that has greatly affected their family — and countless other Canadians. According to the Kidney Foundation of Canada, one in 10 Canadians has kidney disease and many more are at risk. This adds up to roughly 2.6 million Canadians. Kidney failure can be fatal without intensive treatment — ongoing dialysis or a successful organ transplant.

Kidney Marchers’ Bill and Michelle Nadraszky share their community support!


Source – Airdrie City View, published May 30, 2013 by Allison Chorney/Rocky View Publishing.

The community of Prairie Springs will be raising funds June 1, for a local family who is participating in the Kidney March in September on behalf of their daughter, who has kidney disease.
The neighbourhood will be hosting the inaugural Prairie Springs Garage Sale Parade from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. throughout the community.

“We thought as a community, if we could help out a family in need we would,” said event organizer Tracey Tremblay.

Taylor Nadraszky, 13, suffers from nephronophthisis, a disorder of the kidneys that will eventually result in kidney failure and the need for transplant.Nephronophthisis is a rare genetic condition that is the result of inheriting the recessive gene from both parents who are carriers of the gene. When Taylor was diagnosed with the disease in November of 2011, her kidneys were functioning at 44 per cent. A mere 10 months later, her kidney function had reduced to 29 per cent. Kidney failure occurs at 15 per cent functioning.Taylor’s condition is a chronic illness and the Nadraszky’s take things one day at a time.

Tremblay said the event will include help from local children, who will be selling lemonade and hand-draw pictures with the funds going to Michelle and Bill Nadraszky’s efforts in the Kidney March. The event will also include the chance to win gift baskets full of products and vouchers including Norwex products, hair products, a family photography session and a gym pass.

“The Nadraszky family doesn’t live in Prairie Springs but Airdrie is a pretty tight community,” Tremblay said.

She added once a community member made her aware of the Nadraszky’s situation and participation in the Kidney March, she started thinking of ways the neighbourhood could help.

The event was originally planned to be a raffle for the gift baskets but Tremblay said so many people showed interest in becoming involved it became a big community-wide garage sale. At the time of press, Tremblay said about 20 homes had registered to participate in the garage sale.

“With the baskets and the local kids helping out, I think we’ll be able to raise a lot of money,” she said.

Both Michelle and Bill Nadraszky need to raise a minimum of $2,200 to participate in the three-day, 100-kilometre walk, which raises funds for the Canadian Kidney Foundation.

“This is great,” Bill Nadraszky said. “I am looking forward to helping out and really excited and thankful that the Prairie Springs Community garage sale will be helping to raise funds for our cause.”

“The whole town of Airdrie has been amazing,” Michelle Nadraszky said, “residents, businesses, everyone. Complete strangers have offered to help us.”

Any items not sold at the garage sale will be picked up on June 2 and donated to charity, thanks to business sponsors such as Bates Mortgages and Airdrie Upcycle.

To view the original article in all its glory, you can do so here

The Kidney Foundation of Canada releases results of an economic study on the direct and indirect benefits of kidney transplantation

According to estimates, dialysis treatments cost the healthcare system approximately $60,000 a year per patient, compared with $23,000 for a kidney transplant, to which a further $6,000 a year must be added for anti-rejection drugs. Over a five-year period, the total cost of a kidney transplant is around $250,000 less per patient than dialysis. Beyond these figures, one also needs to take into account the improved quality of life enjoyed by transplant recipients, who can lead active lives and return to the labour market.

“From an economic standpoint, it’s obvious that kidney transplantation lessens the financial burden on our healthcare system. We should also remember that the strictly monetary costs associated with dialysis—those related to transportation, medication and loss of revenue – exact a heavy social toll as well: kidney patients have to undergo dialysis treatments three times a week just to survive and are often forced to withdraw from the workforce,” Dr. Yves Rabeau, professor of economics at UQAM.

The need to minimize the social and economic impacts of kidney failure in Quebec is urgent. The number of people suffering from the condition is on the rise, due mainly to the increase in diabetes and high blood pressure, which are precursors to kidney disease.

“We would like to see an increase in the number of kidney transplants. In fact, this particular avenue needs to be given priority within our healthcare system. It’s the solution that offers patients the greatest chance at a normal quality of life, not to mention the most economical option for society,” Dr. Michel R. Pâquet, chairman of The Kidney Foundation of Canada’s Organ and Tissue Donation Committee.

via Organ Donation – Quebec – The Kidney Foundation of Canada | La Fondation canadienne du rein.

Two Time Kidney Marcher, Lauren, has made Avenue Magazine’s 2012 Top 40 Under 40 for being utterly awesome.

Source: Avenue Magazine – Published Nov 1st, 2012 by Robyn Burnett

While Lauren Herschel’s day job as an ecommunications advisor has her managing online activities and social media for Bridgewater Bank, she is also a modern-day pioneer. In June 2011, she anonymously donated her left kidney, starting a paired donation chain that has resulted in four transplants.

Herschel’s curiosity in organ donation was sparked when a friend posted on Facebook that she was donating part of her liver to her father. After her own dad passed away due to cancer, Herschel started doing some research. She contacted the Kidney Foundation and was directed to Foothills Medical Centre and the Southern Alberta Transplant Program. “I had an ‘a-ha!’ moment. If I was healthy enough to donate, I could give somebody time with their family that they wouldn’t normally have,” Herschel says. Click here to read more.

Kidney March is making noise for Kidney Disease…and media is taking notice

Now in its 3rd year, Kidney March is really gaining ground (pun intended as this year marks 300 kilometres of ground gained). This year in particular Marchers have been great at getting Kidney March and Kidney Disease in the news. Just last Friday, Global Calgary aired a segment on the impact of Kidney Disease on the person, home hemodialysis, and The Kidney Foundation. Heather, the health reporter, tied it all back to Kidney March as an important fundraiser to help the Foundation continue its work. You can check out the full Global piece here. Feel free to share it with your family and friends to show them why the March is so critical.