Plymouth Marrow Society on the importance of stem cell donation and the BAME Community

Written by: Plymouth Marrow Society


an Article by Plymouth Marrow Society


Every 14 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with blood cancer. For someone with blood cancer, a stem cell transplant could be their last chance of survival. Anthony Nolan helps to match incredible people willing to donate their stem cells to people with blood cancer to save their life.  Every day Anthony Nolan gives three people a second chance at life. 

Plymouth Marrow is a student branch of Anthony Nolan, as a society we aim to raise awareness of the charity, sign people up to the stem cell register and fundraise to support the incredible work Anthony Nolan does.  To help support this work you can sign up to become a potential donor for someone or help us by volunteering at our Donor Recruitment events. 


It’s spooky season so enjoy this spooky meme. While Halloween may be scary, donating you stem cells isn’t! Sign up to...

Posted by Plymouth Marrow on Monday, 26 October 2020


Signing up to the register is easy! All you need to do is pop down to one of our Donor Recruitment events, or follow this link: You will then need to do a quick cheek swab and fill out some details about yourself. The swab is then processed looking for specific markers that they can match against the patient with blood cancer. The more markers that match, the more compatible you are with that person, meaning the more likely the transplant will work.

If you were called up to donate you would have to have some blood tests to double-check you are the right match for the patient. Once you are confirmed to be the best match, you will go for a series of injections so your body produces more stem cells. You then will travel to the hospital to donate your stem cells. There are two ways this can happen, most likely it will be a peripheral blood stem cell collection, the other is directly from your bone marrow (only 10% donate this way!) Don't worry though as there is a specialist team to talk you through and support you the entire way! 



Wednesday 28th we are having our first face to face socially distanced Donor Recruitment Event this term hosted in The Little Room in the SU between 1pm - 6pm.  During this Black History Month, we want to use this important time to spread awareness of the lack of diversity on the stem cell register meaning people from Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority (BAME) background are less likely to find a stem cell match. (20% chance compared to 60% for northern Europeans.) We fully support the BLM movement and believe no one should have a lesser chance of surviving blood cancer than others. The more BAME people we can get to join the register the more lives we can save. 


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