Every 31 minutes someone in Australia is diagnosed with blood cancer, and for many a blood stem cell transplant from a complete stranger is their only hope.
Younger donors result in better outcomes for patients, so we urgently need 18-35 year olds to register and increase their chances of finding the best possible match.
Ethnic diversity is also important as patients are more likely to find a match with a donor from the same ethnic background.
Young men make particularly important donors – as they often weigh more, they literally have more to give.
Sophie, 31 – Patient (recipient of blood stem cell transplant from an unrelated donor in 2019)
I don't think any words can convey the gratitude and love I have for my donor. I carry them in my thoughts with me every day. Instead of words, I would love to give them a feeling - the feeling when I'm hugging my family, as I'm watching my nieces grow up, when I'm belly laughing with friends when I'm singing in the car with the windows open, watching the sunset at the beach, when I'm out hiking in nature. These are the little moments I cherish the most, the moments that fill me with joy, the moments that blood cancer almost snatched from me, but my donor gave me back. If you're thinking about joining the Registry and becoming a donor, please do.
Ben – Donor
I've always wanted to help other people in any way I can. I'm currently an organ donor, but being in a same-sex relationship has restricted me from giving blood. I was thrilled to learn that your sexuality makes zero difference to whether you can be a blood stem cell donor or not. I couldn't believe it when I got the call from the Registry letting me know that I am someone's match. I felt so lucky that I could be giving another person such a gift. I immediately said "YES!” To anyone thinking about registering, I say do it! The donation process is super easy, just like giving blood. I had no hesitation, and I have zero regrets.
Jordan – Donor
So there we go! I’ve officially donated my blood stem cells! What an absolutely amazing, pain free experience that I’ve had! feel absolutely fine, and everything went smoothly as planned- and now my stem cells are all off to my recipient! Couple of days of recovery now, and hopefully should be my normal self! To anyone thinking about joining the registry, DO IT!!!
Jack – Donor
When the registry called and said I had been matched I felt like I had a unique opportunity to really help someone in need. It’s not often you get that sort of call. The recipient didn’t need just anyone’s cells but specifically my cells because these had the best chance of success. I think this appeals to the little bit of vanity in all of us – almost as if donors have special powers in a time of need. But it also meant I was 100% committed to making the donation and I did not begrudge the minor aches and pains that came with it.
Doug – Donor
I think there’s this idea that a lot of people have that donating will hurt. I didn’t find any of it painful at all. I thought I’d have to go under local anaesthetic but it was just like giving blood or getting an injection before you go on holiday. And to be honest, even if it was painful, I think a little bit of pain is okay when you’ve got the chance to save someone’s life.
Charlotte – Patient
Charlotte was nine months old when she was diagnosed with leukaemia. Her treatment included a life-saving stem cell transplant. Charlotte is in remission and wants to be either a doctor or ballet teacher when she grows up.
Right Now in Australia…
newly diagnosed annually (or >47 per day).