A MUM who is preparing to give her son the gift of life by donating a kidney is looking to her local community for support.
Sharon Archer, 46, nearly lost her son Jack to meningitis when he was a baby and she will do anything to save his life again – including giving one of her organs.
But now the focus is on the charities which supported Jack in his hour of need, with a fund-raising night planned for Friday, October 28.
Sharon said: “We are holding an auction, raffle and disco fund-raising night in the Pennywell Comrades Club for the British Kidney Patient Association and Meningitis UK to give something back to the people who have helped us.
“We hope people come along and show support and really enjoy themselves.”
When Jack, now 15, fell ill with meningitis aged 22 months, doctors told his devastated parents, Sharon and Tim, 48, that the prognosis did not look good.
Sharon, of Pennywell, said: “Jack is a fighter – he was in intensive care and we were told there was a 50/50 chance of him surviving. Then he was put into an induced coma for two weeks.
“It was a terrifying time for us but we had the support of family and friends and the amazing medical staff at the hospital.”
She added: “Jack has been through so much and the kidney transplant is the next huge hurdle, but he is such a positive person and he is determined not to let this stop him.”
But Jack, who amazed the medical team and his family by pulling through, has been left with kidney failure.
Now Sharon is waiting to be told when she will be needed to donate a kidney after tests showed she was a perfect match.
She said: “Jack’s kidneys are now functioning at 40 per cent but the doctors said they are going to wait until they are at 20 per cent. This could take six months or six days, we don’t know.
“But this was not a hard decision to make. I would do anything to help my son. I just want him to be a healthy boy.”
Meningitis UK’s chief executive Steve Dayman, who lost his son Spencer to meningitis, said: “Sharon and Jack have shown tremendous strength and everyone at Meningitis UK is behind them as they move forward through this difficult time.
“We are extremely grateful that they have decided to do some fund-raising which will go towards developing vital life-saving vaccines against all forms of meningitis and associated diseases.”
For more information about Meningitis UK or to donate call 0117 947 6320 or visit www.meningitisuk.org.
The charity night at Pennywell Comrades Club runs from 7pm to 11pm. Tickets are available from the club.