Second lockdown halts Andy Cole Fund charity events
A flashmob tour and charity football match to raise money for the Andy Cole Fund have been put on hold due to the second coronavirus lockdown.
Loughborough University student Sonam Sandhu planned to raise money for the Andy Cole Fund’s research into kidney disease in support of her friend, Jordan Doyle, (JD), who is on the kidney transplant waiting list.
A keen amateur football player, JD, and his team qualified as finalists in the Neymar Jr’s Five RedBull tournament in 2017 and he is well known in the Derby area as an event promoter.
However, since the start of 2020 the 25-year-old has been too ill to play football or work.
Sonam, 21, said: “I haven’t known JD for long, I met him at a video shoot where he and his friend, grime artist Eyez came along to support me, then I would occasionally see them both at football training thereafter.
“Then in February 2020 he put up a Facebook status saying he was in hospital and how very few people knew of his condition. I had no idea, so I reached out and went to visit him in hospital. I spoke to my mum and she began the initial step of helping JD by fundraising for the Andy Cole Fund by setting herself a one million step challenge.”
“I was shocked when I learnt JD had a kidney transplant at the age of seven, but it just shows his great character and how he’s continued to live his life to the best of his ability despite his condition."
JD sent the social media post from his hospital bed as he waited for surgery to create a fistula in his arm. This is a special operation where the surgeon joins a vein to an artery, to create a strong blood vessel for regular dialysis.
He now attends hospital three times a week for dialysis sessions which last 12 hours a time, while waiting for the miracle phone call to say he has a kidney donor match.
Fitness instructor Sonam said: “I have done a lot research into it all and it’s something that definitely needs more awareness because some people really do take their health for granted. I would donate a kidney tomorrow if I could, but from speaking with the Nottingham Kidney Unit (where JD will have his transplant surgery) they state that women who haven’t started their families yet (had children)who donate could face complications during and after pregnancy. So, it’s definitely something I’ll consider in the future.”
Nothing is certain
“Thankfully a few people have come forward to be living donors, but JD is a rare blood type, so we wait to hear test results and how to move forward. Nothing is certain yet due to the global pandemic.”
JD was born with zero kidney function and had to survive seven years using a form of dialysis which washed the toxins from his body using a special fluid.
“At age seven, I was blessed with a deceased kidney from a donor, which for the next 18 years changed my life,” JD said.
“I’ve done a lot in those 18 years and I have tried to help as many people as I can, and for the last two years I’ve focused on highlighting talent and other political agendas in Derby.
“Now at the age of 25, my only kidney that was keeping me alive has failed, leaving me no choice but to attend the hospital three days a week for a total of 12 hours in order to remain alive.
“I want to carry on spreading positive energy to the people of Derby and further afield. The only way I can live my life with a pinch of normality is by asking for help for the first time in my life. Please help me.”
Sonam said: “I am so passionate to help people, so doing this for JD was a must! All the flashmob dancers have become a big family to help support each other and find him a donor, as well as support research to help others like him.
“Please help support the Andy Cole Fund so this young man is able to live a long, healthy life and let us recognise the daily struggle for him and all those who are experiencing this life-threatening condition.
“I can’t wait for lockdown to end so we can get performing again and have JD doing what he does best on the pitch!”
Sonam and her mum, Inj Bola, have already raised £680 for the Andy Cole Fund through Inj walking a million steps during two months in the summer which started on JD’s 25th birthday (31 May).
Sonam performed a flashmob on the completion of her mum’s steps in August to honour JD in front of his hometown, Derby.
The flashmob was supported by international Grime artist Eyez as well local businesses: Dsire Creations, Bonzo On the Cam, Unit03Music and Imjustderbz to raise awareness of JD’s need for a donor and awareness of the work of the Andy Cole Fund managed by Kidney Research UK.