In 2014, there were 79 heart transplants in Australia. Ten years earlier, one of these heart recipients was Mal Long; a Chermside local who was lucky enough to undergo this difficult surgery that helped to extend his life. As a way of giving back (to the doctors, researchers and other staff who made this surgery possible) Mal’s wife Mary began a charity event; the Cycle of Giving.
Fast forward to 2016, and the Cycle of Giving will be celebrating its 11th birthday. The event has grown from 16 participants, to more than 700 taking part in the 25, 65 or 100 kilometre legs of the ride. Each year the ride gets bigger, generating more and more crucial funds for organ transplant research at The Prince Charles Hospital.
In 2016, all funds raised will be supporting young researcher Kenneth Sinclair’s project, looking at stem cell therapy for pre- and post-operative lung transplant patients. It will not only help organ recipients to live longer, more fulfilling lives, but it also may help to make more organs available for those that need them – hopefully reducing the often lengthy wait for a transplant.
The Cycle of Giving has grown from its humble beginnings into a fantastic legacy, promoting organ donation and life-saving organ transplant research. You can get involved by riding, volunteering or donating at www.cycleofgiving.org.au.