The history of our games
These games, which we call "a celebration of life", are arranged bi-annually in one of the member countries and comprise of 20 track and field Athletic events as well as Tennis, Table Tennis, Volleyball, Badminton, Cycling, Golf and Swimming. From a modest start in 1989, our Games have become increasingly popular and have, in recent years attracted almost 600 participants and supporters from our member Associations.
The main purpose of our games is to illustrate the very positive benefits of Organ Donation and Transplantation and to demonstrate to the general public the return to full and active lives, including career and professional activities by transplant recipients. The games are also used to encourage Organ Donor Awareness, and to encourage recipient’s rehabilitation following transplantation through sport and fitness.
There is also a social dimension to our Games where Heart and Lung Transplant recipients exchange and share information and experiences with their fellow recipients from around Europe.
Our games have seen the start of great friendships and more than a few romances!!
How proud Peter Hansen and other early visionaries would be to know that the games they started so many years ago, are now such an important and integral part of the lives of the wider European Transplant family, and an inspiration to all who participate.
You will find the applicable Rules and Regulations for the EHLTF Games in the section DOWNLOADS ➜ of this website.
The previous games took place in the following locations:
1994 - Helsinki
It was formally established in Helsinki, Finland on July 3rd 1994, when representatives from 15 European National Heart- or Heart-Lung Transplant Associations signed the protocol accepting the Statues of the Federation.
1996 - Lausanne
1998 - Bad Oeynhausen
Bad Oeynhausen ( Germany)
2000 - Sandefjord
2002 - Klagenfurt
2004 - Dublin
2006 - Naples
2008 - Vichy
2010 - Växjö
2012 - Apeldoorn
2014 - Vilnius
2016 - Vantaa
2018 - Lignano Sabbiadoro
Lignano Sabbiadoro (Italy)
2020 - Vitoria-Gasteiz - Cancelled because of Corona
Vitoria-Gasteiz, Basque Country (Spain)
2022 - Ostende - Cancelled because of Corona