It is without a doubt that teachers positively affect the lives of children across the globe but it isn’t always that a teacher also saves the life of a student. Fahad Al-Gharbi, the Saudi Arabian coach of a youth football club in Jubbah, a third division club in the Saudi league, donated one of his kidneys this week to save the life of one of his students, Youssef Al-Shammari.
When Al-Shammari quit football after suffering kidney failure, Al-Gharbi decided he did not want his student to leave a sport he loved and, so, signed up to donate his kidney to the young man. This rare act of kindness by the coach has not only saved a young Saudi’s life, it has taken Saudi Arabia by storm as many took to social media to express their feelings and give praise to the coach, with Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, chairman of the General Sports Authority (GSA), joining in to acknowledge Al-Gharbi's humble act.
Prince Abdul Aziz wrote on Twitter: “What the coach of the Jubbah youth football team, Captain Fahad Al-Gharbi, has done through donating a kidney to a player in his team is a humane and noble move. I ask God to reward him for his deed and I thank him for his humane attitude, which does not surprise me.”
Selfless acts like Al-Gharbis have been making headlines all across Saudi Arabia over the past few years, such as last year when twenty-three-year-old Wala Al-Saigh became the anonymous kidney donor to her father saving his life, when Saudi student Ahmed Almohaimeed risked his life by jumping into Melbourne’s Yarra River in Australia to save a drowning man in his 50, and when Hani Al-Nafiei from a village south of Taif descended down a well after midnight in order to rescue a dog he heard barking from a distance.