Kidney transplant girl Zoe Buchanan is two-thirds of the way to the sponsorship target which will allow her to compete in the World Transplant Games in Durban, South Africa in July.
After being selected to represent Great Britain at the games, 17-year-old Zoe has been raising funds to allow her and her mother to travel to the games.
Born weighing only three pounds and 13 ounces, Zoe was diagnosed with a genetic condition called Russel Silver Syndrome, which affected her growth and mobility and caused asymmetry in her organs. With one kidney three times larger than the other, and only 33 per cent function between them both, she showed great determination both in fighting her condition and competing in sports such as badminton, football, table tennis and squash.
When her kidneys failed at the age of 13, her mother Jill Bentley donated her a kidney, and after many hurdles she was soon back to playing badminton, competing in the British Transplant Games in Belfast in 2011 and Medway in 2012, taking part in five events and coming home with a total of nine medals: three gold; three silver; and three bronze.
Zoe was also one of the winners in last year’s Shetland Sports Awards, where she picked up the title of Young Sportsperson of the Year.
Speaking about the 2013 games, she said: “Each athlete has to fund the trip for themselves and I am very grateful to Shetland Catch and all the other generous supporters who are helping me to reach my life goal. To compete as a member of team GB will be an amazing experience.”
Shetland Catch managing director Simon Leiper said: “We are very pleased to be supporting Zoe. We wish her all the very best in raising the funds – and bringing home some medals from Durban.”