Joining Forces with England’s Transplant Football Association The National Kidney Federation have recently teamed up with the England Transplant Football Association. The association was set up in 2019 and provides all recipients who have received an organ transplant, stem-cell or bone marrow transplant with the opportunity to play transplant football locally, nationally and internationally. The National Kidney Federation have jumped on board to spread the word to patients about the opportunity.The aim of the association is to support like-minded people who have received a life-saving donation to get mentally and physically fitter. Helping grow an inclusive game of football around the globe. The England Transplant Team runs alongside a strategy to roll out transplant football regionally. When a wider pool of players are set up around the country playing regularly, this will give the opportunity for scouts to select players for trials for Internationals and National Competitions.Existing teams affiliated to the FA include; Liverpool Transplant FC, Cheshire Transplant FC, Nottingham Transplant FC and London Transplant Warriors FC.The association are in the process currently of setting up five new clubs around the country, as well as affiliating them to their regional football association. With the aim of getting them into a local Ability Counts League. These clubs are in: Leeds Newcastle Guys Hospital (London) Lincolnshire Region Bedfordshire RegionPlus more to be announced in the coming months. Available activities include; an England Men’s Senior Team, a slower paced version of football, Walking Football which is aimed at ages 50+ and Futsal a faster paced small-sided version of football. Catering for all ages groups ages 12+ This year the club are also recruiting players for a new women’s senior team for upcoming friendlies. There will also be opportunities to go on funded coaching, welfare officer or refereeing courses this year.The Founder of the association, Stevie Woodrow, a kidney transplant recipient himself, discusses how he came about to create the association and how working in partnership with the NKF will help to get more people taking part in football: "The growth of transplant football has been a passion of mine since receiving my life-saving kidney transplant in 2012.Having the ability and opportunity to coach and compete competitively again, inspired me to develop a pathway that others can follow. Having the NKF involved is a pinnacle point in our journey as an association. Just like us, the charity is run by patients, for patients. With the charities overall goal of campaigning for improvements to renal provision and treatment and national patient support services. Our regional clubs will actively participate throughout the year to help raise awareness of organ donation and the support service of the NKF provides to over 1 million patients, carers, renal professionals worldwide ever year. The joy I get out of seeing other patients evolve and grow physically and mentally from taking part in transplant football gives me the drive to continue.”NKF Head of Marketing and Fundraising, Pete Revell commented: "The National Kidney Federation are delighted to be working together with the England Transplant Association and to support patients even further. Raising awareness of organ donation is incredibly vital, and we are pretty confident that this will strike up those important conversations around the country with the players sharing their voice and experiences. We are excited for what is to come and we look forward to seeing the England Transplant Football Association expand further as well as being behind the team with our support.”If you are interested in finding out more information about the England Transplant Football Association please call 07455 140 648, email in to [email protected], visit https://transplantfootball.com/ or you can listen to a Podcast episode they recorded with 'Transplants Take on Sport'.