Guest post: The Big Red Kidney Walk

Hi everyone.  Thanks for your messages and good wishes.  I am certainly on the mend, but it is an aggressive little bug(ger), and I think I have another week or so before I’m back to normal.

So, in the interim, a guest post!

The Big Red Kidney Walk is on again on 14 September, around Australia.  Kidney Health Australia put on the Walk every year.  It is designed to help raise awareness and funds for kidney disease across Australia. It is a great event that brings the kidney community together for a family fun day where people can meet, go for a walk or run, enjoy a BBQ and entertainment, and generally catch up.

Tony started dialysis at my unit about 10 months ago.  He is married to Kim, and they have decided to get into the walk in a big way.  Why?  Here’s Kim.

My husband is the Tony in “Team Tony” and he has been diagnosed with kidney cancer twice. Just before Christmas in 2006 he was hit by a car and routine scans at hospital following the accident found cancer in his left kidney. The kidney was removed, there was no need for radiation or chemo and once he recovered from the surgery and a fractured pelvis our lives continued on as normal.

However in September last year he was diagnosed with kidney cancer once again following routine tests for another health issue.  We were devastated. Tony had his right kidney removed and we were plunged immediately into our new life of dialysis, adjusting to a new diet, reduced fluid intake, etc all while he was slowly recovering from surgery and his body was adjusting to suddenly having no kidneys at all.

All of this was made so much easier with the support of the magnificent nurses and staff at Diaverum Diamond Valley Dialysis Clinic especially the wonderful Clinic Manager Chris van Bakel. 

The care Tony receives at Diaverum is incredible and with their support he manages his dialysis and has resumed full time work as a Project Manager. We cannot thank them enough for making this very difficult time for our family so much more bearable.

It is from this exposure to all the kidney related issues and seeing the people both young and old who rely on dialysis to live that has prompted our involvement in the walk.  We want “to give back” and show our support for the carers, nurses and all the other families who on a daily basis support their loved ones who are affected by kidney health issues.

My family wanted to participate in The Big Red Kidney Walk not only to raise money for this wonderful cause but also to raise awareness of kidney health issues. There are so many great causes to support but we believe that kidney disease and other kidney related health issues are “forgotten” when compared to the massive support given to other causes.

So on Sunday 14 September Jack (17), Sarah (13) and I will be pounding the footpaths of Melbourne just happy to be there and have Tony walking along side us.  To be able to fundraise for Kidney Health Australia at the same time is just the icing on the cake!


Kim is giving us a powerful message, one we hear many times on this site: dialysis is not the end of our world.  Our life does change, but with the right dialysis and a good support network, our lives are still our own, and we can still work, play, travel and live it to the full.

4 thoughts on “Guest post: The Big Red Kidney Walk

  1. Great letter and well-deserved praise for the Diamond Valley Dialysis Clinic – they look after you so well – and the red kidney walk sounds as though it will grab attention Marg


  2. So good to hear from you! Thank you for the post about the kidney walk and what sounds like a WONDERFUL family and support team for such a 2 time tough diagnosis (cancer of kidney). Take care:)


  3. Kudos and best of luck to you and your family! I am always in awe of people who are able to take a tragedy and turn it around into a positive source of strength for themselves and then use to help turn other’s lives around. I think it takes a big person to accept what life has thrown at them and keep moving forward. As a family unit, you are all awesome!


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