Fam­ily says thanks to hospice with fes­tive fundrais­ing party

Young­ster re­ceived sup­port from char­ity in her time of need

The Courier & Advertiser (Dundee Edition) - - NEWS - JAMIE BUCHAN [email protected]­courier.co.uk

This was our way of thank­ing Rachel House for help­ing us over the last four years. DAVID HUNTER

A Perth young­ster who re­ceived the gift of life from her fa­ther has helped light up her neigh­bour­hood for Christ­mas.

David Hunter, 45, do­nated one of his kid­neys to save lit­tle Re­becca who was born with a po­ten­tially life-threat­en­ing con­di­tion.

Re­becca, who turns five next week, en­dured two-and-a-half years of chemo dial­y­sis to treat bi­lat­eral cys­tic kid­ney dis­ease, a ge­netic dis­or­der that can cause se­ri­ous organ fail­ure.

Last night, she joined her dad and the rest of the fam­ily, in­clud­ing mum Tracey Nel­son and older sis­ter Rachael, for a street party in Muir­ton to say thanks to Chil­dren’s Hos­pices Across Scotland, bet­ter known as CHAS.

The char­ity, which runs Rachel House in Kin­ross, gave respite and sup­port to the fam­ily dur­ing Re­becca’s treat­ment.

David said he wanted to throw a cel­e­bra­tion to raise funds and show grat­i­tude to the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

The street party in­cluded the switch-on of a 10,000-light dis­play at the fam­ily home.

David said: “Re­becca is fully re­cov­ered since her trans­plant in March.

“Apart from one hospi­tal stay for a slight in­fec­tion, she has not re­quired any fur­ther dial­y­sis. Her blood lev­els have been bril­liant.”

He said: “It was a dif­fi­cult time for all of us. We have no trans­port of our own, so we were trav­el­ling by am­bu­lance to Glas­gow three times a week, for three hours on a dial­y­sis ma­chine.

“For a three-year-old that is very try­ing. She didn’t re­ally un­der­stand it.”

David said all of the fam­ily were as­sessed for a kid­ney trans­plant.

“I was the only one who was a match,” he ex­plained. “There were a lot of tests in­volved, but even­tu­ally we were given the all-clear for surgery in March.

“It was an easy de­ci­sion for me. I knew if I was go­ing to be a match I would do it, no hes­i­ta­tion at all.”

David, who said he feels no dif­fer­ent af­ter the trans­plant, said: “CHAS helped us im­mensely, be­fore and af­ter the surgery. This was our way of thank­ing Rachel House for help­ing us over the last four years.”

“Re­becca loves vis­it­ing Rachel House and we’re due to go back for a stay next week for her birthday.”

De­cem­ber is now upon us and even the most Scrooge­like are surely aware we can’t hold back the fes­tive sea­son much longer.

The shops have been stock­ing Christ­mas goods for weeks, but now dec­o­ra­tions are go­ing up ev­ery­where. Yet it is not all about ram­pant con­sumerism.

In Perth lit­tle Re­becca Hunter threw a party for all her neigh­bours, with Rachel House set to ben­e­fit.

Now there’s a real rea­son for fes­tive cheer.

Pic­ture: Kenny Smith.

Re­becca with her dad David, who gave her one of his kid­neys.

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