Julie Rogers, 45, had been diagnosed with polycystic kidney disease, which has claimed the lives of her grandfather and two aunts. She had her kidneys removed in 2011 and as her mother, sister and daughters were also found to have the hereditary condition and hence no one from her family was able to donate their kidneys.
Julie required three five-hour dialysis sessions a week to keep her alive and her kidneys grew so large that people thought she was pregnant. When Helen found that her blood type matched with Julie, she quickly decided to donate her kidney.
"When our blood types matched, I just knew that it was meant to be. People keep saying I'm brave, but you would have to meet Julie to know why I'm doing it. I've never had a major operation or even children so I'm in blissful ignorance what it's like. I'm told the morphine drip is marvelous!", Helen said.