Hey there Beautiful People! It’s Friiiddaaaayyy and despite it being quite chilly outside the sun is shining here in London, England which happens to make me an even happier human being! Welcome to my third edition of my #healthisweath series. Today I thought I would postpone the importance of sleep article to discuss and shed some light on the importance of completing a selfless actby donating bloodand registering on the british bone marrow register in order to contribute to saving a life or three….
As some of your are already aware, I signed up to the British Bone Marrow Register and have been regularly donating blood since late 2011 after hearing about the African Caribbean Leukaeima Trust via then choice fm radio and an article in the newspaper about a little young boy by the name of Kye Carpenter-Mark who urgently needed to find a match. Since that day I have gone on to support this charity over the years, spreading awareness and helping raise funds for over £4,000.00 with my Gold Challenge Breakin’ Boundrez team.I am also a trained councillor for the ACLT which duties involves taking salivia samples from volunteers at some of the charities registered blood and bone marrow drives in London and helping them correctly fill their registration form out.
With The ACLT’s annual drive in Central London looming (next Saturday to be precise), I thought would take the opportunity to once again, enlighten you all of the importance to donate blood whilst signing up to the bone marrow register, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE OF BLACK, MIXED HERITAGE OR ASIAN DECENT and hope after reading this article, you too will be inspired to rally your friends and family together to help our people.
The African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust (ACLT) works with the Anthony NolanTrust to recruit Bone Marrow Donors and NHS Blood and Transplant registries to sign up blood and organ donors.
Unlike the Anthony Nolan Trust, the ACLT predominately focuses on recruiting individuals from ethnic minority backgrounds within the African-Caribbean, Asian and East Asian communities as it is these people that are the most severely unrepresented on both the Blood and Bone Marrow Register, less than 1% to be exact!
Even though society is becoming more and more ethnically diverse, the percentage of registered people of mixed heritage like I are even smaller, as our tissue types become more and more unique to individuals from our ethnic background.
So if you are of mixed heritage, you’ve probably got less than 1 in 100,000 chance of finding a match if none of your close family members are suitable!
This my friends is a shocking statistic which ultimately means that those diagnosed with blood cancers such as leukaemia within ethnicminority communities are less likely to find a genetic match than someone who is of Caucasian decent (who have approx. 1 in 4 chance of finding a match).
The ACLT campaigns tirelessly to recruit more people from Ethnic Minority backgrounds due to the massive shortfall of donors around the world and desperately need more people to step forward!
For some reason unbeknown to us, our community is reluctant to sign up to the register and help save a life and as a result, many more lives are being taken each day! Rest In Perfect Peace to the angels that have already been taken from us (too many too mention). I am hoping we can lead by example by being that person in your circle that inspire others to make a difference.
Sometimes when we read statistics it doesn’t have the same impact as watching a short video so if you’re a visuals person like me, please can you kindly take a few moments to watch this heartbreaking video that puts into perspective the exact problems ethnic minorities face when diagnosed with blood related cancers.
It Could Be YOU that ultimately helps save the life of someone like John in this video – Be a LIFESAVER!
Every so often, The ACLT works with closely with patients diagnosed with Leukaemia and subject to approval from the patient, a worldwide appeal is conducted to encourage more members of the public to sign up to become a potential donor for someone in need.
Upon arrival, you will complete an application form and provide a small saliva sample. Joining the register couldn’t be more simple!
If you are aged 31-49 – you are not too old to donate – click here to register via the National Blood Service (NBS) as a blood donor and you can join their bone marrow register (British Bone Marrow Register)
Once you are on the register, you could be called upon as a match for someone like John in the video and potentially save their life! If you are found to be a matching donor, donating your stem cells is not much different from giving blood and there is no operation involved.
Please take a few minutes to watch a short Anthony Nolan Animation Video to find out exactly what bone marrow donation involves.
If you are aged 16-30, in good health and live in the UK please consider coming along to one of the ACLT’s recruitment drives listed below.
ACLT In Association With Capital Xtra and Global Radio
Saturday 14th March 2015 – OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC Time: 12pm till 6pm
30 Leicester Square London WC2H 7LA
ACLT In Association With Fair-weather Productions
Sunday 15th March 2015 OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC Time: 7.30pm till 11pm
Fairfield Halls Park Lane Croydon CR9 1DG
ACLT In Association With Woodhouse College
Thursday 26th March 2015 NOT OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC Time: 9am till 4pm
Woodhouse College Woodhouse Road London N12 9EY
ACLT In Association With J’s Dance Factory
Sunday 29th March 2015 NOT OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC Time: 3pm till 6pm
The Broadway Theatre, Rushey Green, Catford SE6 4RU
If you live in the United Kingdom and cannot make the recruitment drives listed above you can register on-line and get a saliva kit delivered to your home address .
Should you not live in the UK, and would like to register to become a bone marrow donor, please click on your country of residence below:
Please help me spread the message far and wide, to friends, family members, work colleagues and across your own social media platforms about the importance of signing up to become a bone marrow donor (especially those from ethnic minority communities) by sharing this post.
Please do not wait until it affects someone you know to make a difference, for there are many people just like John in this video who urgently need your help today and time is running out!
Danielle is a 1st Dan Kickboxing coach / Assistant Instructor under the PKA Kickboxing Association who is also a health, fitness, green beauty, wellness and lifestyle freelance writer / digital journalist. Her passions include encouraging others to lead an active, health conscious lifestyle whilst leading her Breakin' Boundrez team on various fitness related challenges.