Brave Murad has unforgettable summer

IT’S BEEN an unforgettable summer for a brave 11-year-old boy from East Ham who has a rare kidney condition.

Murad Shaikh, of Heigham Road, who had a life-saving kidney transplant two years ago, has battled illness to take part in the Transplant Games in Bath and go to Disneyland Paris.

He even found time to appear on stage at Wembley Arena with his pop star idol, Abrar-ul-Haq.

Murad’s adventure began when he was taken with his family by Evelina Children’s Hospital in Lambeth to the Transplant Games in Bath in August.

Murad – who has the rare and sometimes fatal kidney and blood disorder Fanconi anaemia – joined hundreds of transplant athletes from around the country to take part in the event at Bath University.

He had great fun participating in the obstacle course and table tennis.

Mother Gowhar said: “I was very proud of Murad. Everybody was cheering him on.

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“He suffers from arthritis. He did wonderfully well to take part.”

During their four-day trip, Murad and his family were treated to a stay in a five-star hotel and attended a reception with other donor families at Bath Abbey.

Gowhar said: “We had a wonderful holiday.

“It gave Murad’s confidence a big boost and he made lots of friends. It was lovely to spend time with other families in a similar situation.”

Despite suffering a kidney infection, Murad’s eventful summer continued in September when he met his pop idol Abrar-ul-Haq at a charity concert for Pakistan flood relief.

Then, with the help of Richard House Hospice in Beckton, Murad was one of the 200 sick children who joined the Magical Taxi Tour to Disneyland Paris.

The excited children were seen off on their black cab adventure by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, at Canary Wharf.

Gowhar said: “All the children felt really special. It was an amazing experience for Murad.”

After all those memorable times, Murad joined Langdon School in Sussex Road, East Ham, where he has already made many friends and enjoys his studies, despite needing regular medical attention.

Gowhar urges people to give blood and bone marrow donations to help save the lives of children like Murad.

People can also make a difference to the lives of Murad and other youngsters by donating to Evelina Children’s Hospital or Richard House.