Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 4th 2016 Contents Tricia Carribon has given life
to her son Mikkel Wilson twice.
The first time was some 17 years
ago when he was born. The second
was in January last year when
Carribon gave one of her kidneys
to Wilson after he suffered renal
"To say thank you to her for what
she did would almost be like not
enough because I mean she gave
me life and then saved it.
"So being able to put it in words
which someone else could under-
stand is kind of hard, so it is almost
like if you watching a movie and a
character says I am eternally grate-
ful. Well it is something like that,"
Last Sunday, Guardian Media
launched Gift of Life, a campaign
to promote public awareness about
organ donation and transplant with
the aim of encouraging citizens to
augment this country s donor pool.
This week the T&T Sunday
Guardian focuses on two mothers
who gave their kidneys to save the
lives of their children.
Like Carribon, Nalini Narine also
stepped up when her son needed
She donated her kidney to her
son, Aaron, who suffered from renal
failure when he was only 17 days
old. On June 29 Aaron celebrated
his 17th birthday due in large part
to the donation of his mother s kid-
While the paths of Mikkel and
Aaron, who are both aged 17 have
been different, one constant in both
their lives is the unconditional love
of their mothers.
A mother's love
In September 2013, Mikkel, who
was described as a "relatively nor-
mal 14-year-old schoolboy" by his
mother, had just started Form Four
at Trinity College in Moka, Maraval,
when he started to complain about
cramps in his hand and lost his
appetite. Tricia carried him to the
family s doctor and blood tests were
That was when Wilson s life
"When my mom got the results
back she was on work and they just
came and picked me up from school
in the middle of the day and she
told me about the results while we
were in the car.
"I was not sure what it meant
at the time and I only understood
what was going on when we were
by the doctor and he was talking
and he referred me to (the Eric
Williams Medical Sciences Com-
plex) Mt Hope because he said with
results like this, it was beyond his
field," Wilson said.
After he was admitted to hospital
it was determined that he had end
stage renal failure and both of his
kidneys were not functioning.
Tricia said it was a "confusing"
time for them.
"It did not have a major lead up.
We went from home to living in
the hospital for four or five days.
I was confused and I said I needed
somebody to explain this to me
properly. I started research, I even
wrote a doctor in Jamaica because
I was just looking for answers and
trying to understand what was
going on," she said.
"During that period we found
out about the National Organ
Transplant Unit (NOTU) downstairs
and when I went to find out about
it I thought, well you put your name
on the list and something would
happen and you would get a kidney
but then I found out it does not
work like that.
"There are hundreds of people
on the list and you have to be
extremely lucky to get a donor that
matches you," she said.
Tricia said NOTU staff informed
her that the family were a likely
match. Her mind was made up.
"That is when I started the
process of getting tested to see if
I was compatible and it worked out
that I was," she said.
She decided to transfer Wilson
out of the Moka school to one clos-
er to family. She went to a popular
Port-of-Spain college but was not
seen by anyone there, so on the
advice of a friend she went to St
George s College in Barataria to see
if she could get Wilson transferred
The school s principal James
Sammy "saw me without hesita-
tion", she recalled.
"He told me, You know what,
I don t have any more room in my
school but I will make room for
this child. Life has dealt you a real
negative blow and I m not going
to turn him down . That was a mind
blowing experience," she said.
Wilson started school there in
January 2014. He had started dial-
ysis the month before and did for
just over a year.
"For the whole year he did dial-
ysis he had to leave school twice a
Wednesday around 1 pm, do dial-
ysis, finish dialysis around 7 pm,
and then on Saturday we would do
the routine again. That particular
year was real rough. He missed
classes, he got schoolwork from
friends," she said.
In January 2015 Wilson got the
"When he got my kidney he was
away from school for that entire
term, so he missed school from
January to March. He went back
after the Easter term and he tried
to catch up with his school work,"
Wilson got seven passes in the
Caribbean Secondary Education
Certificate (CSEC) exam this year
and will be starting Sixth Form at
St George s College tomorrow. He
will be doing Chemistry, Biology
and Food and Nutrition.
"I was just happy that I was a
match, that we were compatible.
Of course he is getting an older
person s kidney so from reading
literature and stuff kidney trans-
plants most likely don t last forever.
"They have a life span of 12 to
15 years," she said.
"You can have multiple kidney
transplants in your lifetime. It is
something I don t like to think
about as a parent. I don t have any
more to give to him. Who will be
down the road? I always try to think
positive and try to promote positive
eating habits because it is one kid-
ney we both have."
Not only does Wilson have a new
lease on life he also has plans for
"I want to go into genetic engi-
neering. I am not sure if I want to
get into the food and crops aspect
or the medicine aspect but there
are pathways to do both because I
September 4, 2016 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
Continues on Page A10
Saved by mother's love
Young kidney recipients share their stories
Mikkel Wilson with his mother Tricia Carribon who donated her kidney for his transplant in January 2015.
Aaron Narine and his mother Nalini Narine. Nalini donated her kidney
to Aaron for a transplant in September 2010.
In January 2015 Mikkel got the kidney transplant. "When he got
my kidney he was away from school for that entire term, so he
missed school from January to March. He went back after the
Easter term and he tried to catch up with his school work," his
mother Tricia said. He got seven passes in the Caribbean
Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) exam this year and will be
starting Sixth Form at St George's College tomorrow. He will be
doing Chemistry, Biology and Food and Nutrition.
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