Broadwater’s Ben brings home a gold medal

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THIS Olympic year will have golden memories for seven-year-old Ben Haste, of Broadwater.

For Ben can treasure the obstacle course gold medal he won at the 2012 British Transplant Games, held at Medway, Kent.

And Ben, who represented Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH), also won a bronze medal in the long jump.

Ben, who attends Our Lady of Sion School in Worthing, has been a patient at GOSH since he was seven days old. He suffers from a rare genetic disorder called autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease and congenital hepatic fibrosis. It is a chronic and progressive disease that causes eventual kidney failure and liver abnormalities. Ben underwent a successful liver and kidney transplant at Birmingham Children’s Hospital when he was two and has since gone on to succeed in sport.

The British Transplant Games took place over four days, aiming to encourage transplant patients to regain fitness and confidence by celebrating life, plus increasing public awareness of the value of organ donation and honouring the transplant recipients, donors and donor families.

Ben’s medals success was a particular thrill for his parents, Andy and Julie Haste. Julie said: “It was a great weekend, very emotional. We are very proud of our son’s and all of the athletes’ achievements, whether they won a medal or not. Truly a gift of life.”