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The Power of Pairing Up: Real Stories


Ordinary people can do extraordinary things when they Pair Up in the fight to prevent kidney disease. And by “extraordinary things,” we mean the simple actions that can have such a big difference… like working with a friend or loved one to exercise more, eat healthy, get screened, or increase the public’s awareness of kidney disease.

We want to know how you’re Pairing Up for the important cause of preventing kidney disease. Consider sharing your story with us and be inspired by the people who've already done so!

Read Stories


Tomara Kern

Tomara Kern’s Story

Tomara Kern - December 16, 2013

Pair Up supporter Tomara Kern of Fort Wayne, Ind., has a special motivation for working on improving her health and losing weight: She is adopting a teenager with CKD and hopes to be able to donate a kidney to him! Read Tomara’s story and take a moment to share your own story of Pairing Up in the fight to prevent kidney disease.

Kay Wright (Center) with her sisters

Kay Wright's Story

Kay Wright - May 20, 2013

I have "Paired Up" with my sisters. My late father was a dialysis patient who died due to diabetes complications and cardiovascular issues. My sisters and I are all diabetics.

Krista Welschmeyer

Krista Welschmeyer's Story

Krista Welschmeyer - March 18, 2013

Swollen ankles, that is how it all started. Then the swelling moved up my legs and made me miserable! Doctors did blood work only, and what turned into an eight-month ordeal could have been avoid by a simple urine test.

Wanda Phillips

Wanda Phillips's Story

Wanda Phillips - November 16, 2012

I donated a kidney to my husband in April of 2011. He made a miraculous recovery. We spend time telling our story to others so they will not have the same story.

Shennel Huffman

Shennel Huffman's Story

Author: Shennel Huffman - October 15, 2012

Early detection of kidney disease is an essential ingredient for prolonging one's renal function, and life in general. I have been a Type I, insulin-dependent diabetic since age nine.

Conya Herrin

Conya Herrin's Story

Conya Herrin - Augusta, GA - January 27, 2012

There are many people at risk for kidney disease and being able to share my story with others allows me an opportunity to make a difference.

Dale Colley

Dale Colley's Story

Dale Colley - Austin, TX - January 27, 2012

I am sharing my story because I want people to know how devastating this disease can be, I was already in stage III CKD before I even knew that I had it!

Nancy and Anthony

Nancy and Anthony

Nancy and Anthony Luciani - September 22, 2011

After Nancy Luciani’s husband, Anthony, donated a kidney to her, the couple realized they had a mission: to Pair Up to increase public understanding of kidney disease prevention.

Jacqueline and Layla

Jacqueline and Layla

Jacqueline Gray - September 21, 2011

For Jacqueline Gray, the importance of maintaining kidney health hits home. Her brother-in-law developed kidney disease, but because of the silent nature of the condition, he was unaware until he was hospitalized for kidney failure and had to begin dialysis.

Genevieve and Timothy

Genevieve and Timothy

Genevieve and Timothy Gural - September 20, 2011

Genevieve and Timothy Gural are Pairing Up to prevent kidney disease by attending American Kidney Fund health screenings and encouraging each other to be more active.

Diane and Vanessa

Vanessa and Diane

Vanessa Lee and Diane Bertocchi - September 16, 2011

Co-workers Vanessa Lee and Diane Bertocchi have found that committing to exercise comes easier when you Pair Up with someone else.

Share your Story!