"Harmonies of Hope" choir for kidney transplant children set up by King's researcher
A research fellow from King’s College London and transplant surgeon in training from Guy’s and Evelina Children’s Hospital, Mr Pankaj Chandak, has set up a choir for children who have received a kidney transplant.
The choir called ‘Harmonies of Hope’, is supported by funding from BBC Children in Need and is made up of children who have received a kidney transplant and their siblings.
Mr Chandak and his team set up the choir in the hope that this will give young patients something to celebrate when they get together and sing. Many patients and their families have been through a lot by needing transplants at such a young age.
Mr Chandak says:
"This was a vision I had, aiming to combine music with medicine and science and of course, the real-life stories of these children and their families. It took over 2 years to develop and with support through a grant from BBC Children in Need and a fantastic team including Grainne Walsh (Advanced Nurse Practioner, ECH), Tori Longdon ( London Conductor & Assistant Conductor of National Youth Choirs of Great Britain), Nicos Kessaris (Paediatric Transplant Consultant), Matt Allinson (Communications and Public Engagement Manager) and Ben Phillips (Transplant Registrar and Research Fellow) - it’s just so moving to see it all come together. I wanted to give our young patients a united voice that would hopefully inspire other families in similar situations. We aim to combine our music with science lessons too”.
The choir’s first performance was for the 50th anniversary of the first paediatric transplant performed at Evelina Children’s Hospital and will continue to do so throughout 2019. Their next performance will be at the Centre of the Cell, QMUL in London in Spring 2019.
The choir was featured in BBC London News here.