At four months old Ben went into heart failure and was flown to Starship Hospital. He was diagnosed with Autosomal Recessive Polycystic Kidney Disease, a one in 40,000 chance genetic condition. The first two years were tough but he pulled through. He underwent major surgery in Australia aged 6 and received a liver transplant aged 9. Just one year later he won swimming gold at the Australian Transplant Games.
Now 14 years old, Ben is at high school in Christchurch. He loves playing Minecraft with his sister and Fortnight with his friends. He still enjoys swimming and is a Scout. He adores all animals, especially his cat, Manny. With only 35% kidney function he’ll need a kidney transplant in the next few years but takes it all in his stride and even continues to bike to school every day.
Ben lives with his dad, mum, younger sister Maia, cat Manny and pet frog although if he had his way, he’d have loads more pets!