I don’t normally blog at length on my Tumblr, and I’ve in fact already posted this on my personal blog. But since this needed a bigger audience, I thought I’d post it here too. :)
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I recently learnt about someone I know whose child is in need of a bone marrow transplant. As soon as I heard about it, a nagging feeling impressed upon me to do something. I’m not close to this person but it was clear that God wanted me to help. So I went to find out more about bone marrow transplant and learnt that it was actually very easy to get involved.
The process is simple: go down to any of the registered centres to give a blood sample (via finger prick) or a swab from the side of your mouth (you know, like CSI), and you’ll be in the Bone Marrow Donor Programme registry. A full-on prep and operation will only take place when there is a match to your tissue type. Of course, you’ll need to adhere to the medical guidelines first before you even consider registering as a donor, but as most of us easily meet the requirements, I do urge you to consider doing your part. :)
In the event that you do become a match, the organisation has made it very clear that registered donors can still change their minds. This is because the donor must understand that the process requires time and commitment, which the BMDP probably knows we may not be able to afford at certain points in our lives. You see, not only will there be a series of additional tests that will need to be carried out before the operation takes place, there are also the side effects (mostly in the form of slight discomforts in the lower back) which may inconvenience us for awhile. So as much as I want to encourage you to be a donor, be aware of the implications first and ensure you can commit. Imagine the disappointment the family would feel if they learn that a registered donor was unwilling to help.
So why am I blogging about this? Even though the process of registering is simple, and there are already a considerable number of donors registered in the database, many, many children are still dying because they can’t find a match. Yes, it is that difficult to find a match. Hence, we need more numbers to get involved in this bid to save lives. With a greater number of donors, comes a greater probability of finding that elusive match. I’m going down to the clinic this week to get myself registered. And I hope you’ll do the same. Or at least, tell someone about it.