The Vancouver 2018 Canadian Transplant Games will be held in Vancouver, British Columbia from July 2 – 7, 2018. With a generous financial pledge from The Simon Keith Foundation, all junior (ages 4 – 11) and youth (ages 12 – 17) competitors will receive complimentary registration.
A biennial competition, the CTG is the premiere athletic celebration of sport for transplant recipients from across the country. The focus of the Games is to provide these individuals with a venue of national competition and also to prepare for the World Transplant Games. All transplant athletes are welcome.
Each registration includes accommodations in a single room and meals, Opening and Closing Ceremonies, Donor Walk, Family Picnic, Gala Dinner, entry to competition, transfers to and from Vancouver International Airport on July 2 and 7 and transportation to and from events. Individuals and families interested in competing in the CTG and registration information, please visit www.CanadianTransplant.com.
For Simon Keith, his devotion to athletics and providing opportunities for children is at the heart of his Foundation.
“As part of our ongoing commitment to support children who have undergone a life-saving organ transplant, we are especially committed to programs that assist those who desire a return to an active and healthy lifestyle,” said Keith. “The ability for youth to compete in the Canadian Transplant Games showcases the incredible gift of life that they have received, while celebrating the heroic donors and donor families. We are privileged and honored to be able to underwrite the registration fees for all juniors and youths who want to compete to the best of their ability.”
As one of the world’s longest living heart transplant recipients, Keith’s story is one of perseverance. A promising soccer prospect in Canada, and part of the National Team Soccer program Keith was diagnosed with myocarditis, a deterioration of the heart muscle. On July 7, 1986, at the age of 21, he was the recipient of a heart transplant.
Amazingly Keith returned to competitive soccer playing for the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). After playing two seasons with the Rebels, Keith garnered many honors including being named the Student-Athlete of Year for the Conference as well as voted as USA’s Most Courageous Athlete. After his senior season, Keith was named the Most Valuable Player at the Senior Bowl and was drafted first overall into the Major Indoor Soccer League, just three years after his heart transplant. Keith is the first athlete in the world to ever play a professional sport after having undergone a heart transplant.
Keith also serves as the Chief Operating Officer for the Nevada Donor Network, the federally designated organ procurement organization serving Las Vegas and is in high demand as a keynote and motivational speaker. Keith is a 2016 inductee into the Greater Victoria Sports Hall of Fame and a 2015 recipient of the Canadian Humanitarian Award by the David Foster Foundation.