Triple Transplant Games Medal Win for Karen

Triple Transplant Games Medal Win for Karen

An Essex woman who underwent a double lung transplant has taken home three medals in the World Transplant Games in Australia this week after her employers stepped in to support her fundraising. 


Karen Mills, 34, who lives in Colchester, was born with cystic fibrosis and underwent a double lung transplant at the Royal Papworth Hospital weeks before her 28th birthday in 2016. Her transplant qualified Karen to compete at four British and World Transplant Games since 2018 in six sporting events including javelin, swimming, pétanque, and tenpin bowling.


After previously competing in three separate British events, which saw Karen score a gold medal win in the women’s 400m at the European games in 2022, she was selected to represent Great Britain in the 2023 World Transplant Games in Perth, competing in four categories.


Founded over 35 years ago the Transplant Games aims to educate and raise awareness about organ donation and transplants by bringing together individuals from all over the world to compete in various track, field, and aquatic events.


Karen needed to self-fund her participation in the games, with an appeal on JustGiving. Her employer, Provide Community, a Community Interest Company stepped in to support her fundraising efforts, which included match-funding of £1,005 and sponsorship of £3,500 which covered Karen’s travel to Australia and her registration fee for the Games.


Karen succeeded in all three of her World Transplant Games sporting categories, bringing home silver in Ball Throw, and bronze in Tenpin Bowling and Petanque.


Karen spoke openly about the support she’d received from her work colleagues and her employer Provide Community, where she works in finance: “I’ve been truly blown away at the level of support, not just with finances. The genuine person-on-person support has made me feel so valued, and I’ve felt that Provide Community is proud to have me as an employee. And that’s something I’ve never had in the workplace.


“Considering that ninety-nine percent of the time I’ve worked for Provide Community has been at home, the level of support has been amazing. It doesn’t feel like a business, it’s an amazing environment to be in.”


Provide Group CEO Mark Heasman said: “What an amazing woman Karen is! We have been blown away by her courage, tenacity and talent, and everyone here is so proud of what she has achieved.

“We have a mission to reinvest in the people and communities we serve, and It is an honour for both the organisation and all Karen’s Provide colleagues to be able to have supported her in her journey to success for Team GB in Australia.”

To follow Karen’s journey visit her Facebook page at

All articles on this news site are submitted by registered contributors of EssexWire. Find out how to subscribe and submit your stories here »