Sunderland is playing host to World Transplant Games swimming, cycling and ten pin bowling competitions this week.

The games are about celebrating the gift of life and raising awareness of organ donation, and all the events are free to attend for spectators. Transplant athletes will be competing in events in Sunderland between Monday 19 and Wednesday 21 August.
 
Spectators can come along and see: 

Ten Pin Bowling at Hollywood Bowling Washington, the Galleries Retail Park, Washington NE38 7RZ:

Monday 19 August 
• Individual competitions between 10am-6pm 
• Medal ceremonies will take place at the venue after each final 
Tuesday 20 August 
• Pairs competitions between 10am-6pm 
• Medal ceremonies will take place at the venue after each final 

30 KM Road Race at Hetton Lyons Country Park, Downs Pit Lane, Hetton le Hole DH5 ORN

Tuesday 20 August 
Competitors will arrive for 10am - the event will conclude at 4.30pm. Races include: 
• Road race - 17 laps of the course
• Race 1 - 11am - Women - all age categories 
• Race 2 - 12 noon - Men categories 18-29 and 30-39 yr old 
• Race 3 - 1pm - Vets Men 40-49yr old 
• Race 4 - 2pm - Vets Men 50-59yr old 
• Race 5 - 3pm - Vets Men 60+ 
• Medal ceremonies will take place on site after each race 

Swimming at Sunderland Aquatic Centre, Stadium Park, Sunderland SR5 1SU:

Tuesday 20 August 
Various events between 10am - 5pm including: 
• Adults Juniors 12-14, 15-17 Juniors 5 and Under, 6-8, 9-11 
• 200 Freestyle 
• 50 Butterfly 25 Butterfly 
• 100 Breaststroke 50 Breaststroke 
• 50 Backstroke 25 Backstroke 
• 100 Freestyle 50 Freestyle 
• 4x50 Freestyle Relay (women) 
• 4x50 Medley Relay (men) 
• Medal ceremonies will take place at the venue after each final 
Wednesday 21 August 
Various events between 10am - 5pm including : 
• Adults Juniors 12-14, 15-17 Juniors 5 and Under, 6-8, 9-11 
• 400 Freestyle 200 Freestyle 
• 50 Freestyle 25 Freestyle 
• 200 Individual Medley 
• 100 Backstroke 50 Backstroke 
• 50 Breaststroke 25 Breaststroke 
• 4X50m Medley Relay (women) 
• 4X50m Freestyle Relay (men) 
• 4x50 Freestyle 200+ Year Relay (mixed) 
• Medal ceremonies will take place at the venue after each final 

Around 2,500 sporting hopefuls  (500 from Great Britain and Northern Ireland) from 59 countries across the world are taking part in 16 sports across the North East ranging from athletics, basketball and cycling to football, swimming and volleyball. the event is being hosted by Newcastle Gateshead.

All those taking part are either recipients of organ or tissue transplant, living donors or donor families. For more information on the games go to: www.worldtransplantgames.org 

Councillor John Kelly Cabinet Member for Communities and Culture at Sunderland City Council, hopes Sunderland residents will turn out to cheer on all those taking part. 

He said: "Please do show your support for the competitors and their cause by attending an event. 

"It's a real honour to be one of the cities hosting the games. Each and every one of the athletes taking part will have battled against the odds to take part in one of the world's greatest sporting events. 

"I'm hoping the people of our city will turn out to watch the swimming, cycling and ten pin bowling competitions for free at Sunderland Aquatic Centre, Hetton Lyons Country Park and Hollywood Bowling Washington and to cheer the athletes on and give them a warm Sunderland welcome. 

"I also hope they'll be inspired by the athletes taking part to sign up to become organ donors and discuss their wishes with their loved ones because that's what the games are all about." 

At any one time there are around 5,900 people on the transplant waiting list and on average three people die every day who could have benefited from organ donation. 

Cllr Kelly added: "It's really important that we sign up to organ donation and tell our families about it so that they know our wishes when we're gone." 

Hosting three of the World Transplant Games sports builds on Sunderland's growing reputation as an award winning events city and the success of events like the National Cyclocross at Hetton Lyons Country Park in 2018 and the Tennis Winter Cup. 

In Spring 2020 organ donation in England will move to an 'opt out' system. Find out how to register as an organ donor and more information on the changes at https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/