A Call to Join Forces Against Kidney Disease

Last Week, I had the pleasure to meet Said El Kharrazi, president of the “Fédération Marocaine Des Associations De Soutien Des Insuffisants Rénaux” (FMAIRTO) – Moroccan Federation Of Associations Supporting Kidney Patients – and one of the kidney cause most dedicated persons I have ever met!

Said is an agronomist by education. He learned about kidney disease when his mother got sick and was diagnosed with kidney failure. Before, like most people, when hearing about kidney disease, he believed it wasn’t such an important matter. “I thought that maybe you could be cured by being on dialysis for some weeks and then you were fine” he said. But, very soon, he understood that the reality wasn’t as easy. That’s why, later on, Said decided to create FMAIRTO. Kidney disease is more impactful than people think: “it damages your health but also your daily life as you have to spend a lot of time on dialysis for life”. Also, it costs a lot of money for the patients and the governments” told Said. This is one of the reasons why prevention is so crucial, according to him: “we need to prevent the risk factors of kidney disease”!

The foundation gathers all the kidney –related associations existing in Morocco, from the biggest to the smallest. Their key mission is to raise awareness of kidney disease and reduce its impact in the country. “They are doing a great job collaborating with radios and TV in Morocco. Every year, the Federation translates all the World Kidney Day material in Arabic and helps spread the WKD message on social media: “We disseminate the important information, like the 8 golden rules for healthy kidney, in a simple language to make it accessible to the whole population”.

The Federation work never stops, all year round volunteers go to hospitals, schools, squares and public parks, to raise awareness and organise screening events.

I spoke with Said about our WKD 2016 theme: Kidney Disease and Children, Act early to prevent it”. Said is convinced that organizing activities with kids is a high priority: “Children are always very excited to learn new things and share what they learnt with their families”.

Said is proudly committed to the kidney cause, “kidney patients can’t wait, they are suffering and we need to find solutions for them”. Most of his work is on a voluntary basis. As he said, kidney disease is very spread in Morocco but there is a lack of money given to this cause.

Said is calling on all the World Kidney Champions, no matter where they are based, to gather together and collaborate on kidney disease awareness. He really believes that to win the fight against kidney disease and , help kidney patients, people working for the kidney cause need to team up. “We need to share information, best practices and guidelines to reduce the frequency and the impact of kidney disease in our countries. Collaboration among different cultures and exchange of ideas are key”

If you would like to know more or would like to speak with Said about future collaboration, visit:

http://bit.ly/2bftHsI

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