Yaser

Husband to Vicki and father to Oscar (2007), Rufus (2008), Digby (2015), Humphrey (2017) & Margot (2012-2014)

May 28, 2024

Reflecting on World Blood Cancer Day: Our Shared Responsibility

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Today, on World Blood Cancer Day, we stand together to acknowledge the immense challenges faced by those battling blood cancers and to reaffirm our commitment to saving lives through increased awareness and donor registrations.

Blood cancer has touched many lives, including my own family’s. When my daughter Margot was diagnosed with leukaemia, my family embarked on a journey of hope and determination to find a matching donor. This journey, filled with highs and lows, led to the creation of Team Margot. Although Margot is no longer with us, her legacy continues to inspire our mission to encourage more people to register as stem cell and bone marrow donors.

The fight against blood cancer is not just a medical battle; it is a societal one. For too long, the focus of awareness campaigns and donor drives has predominantly catered to a white audience, overlooking the critical need for diversity in donor registries. This disparity means that patients from mixed heritage and ethnic minority backgrounds have a significantly lower chance of finding a suitable donor match.

One in five people in the UK is of mixed heritage or ethnic minority, a figure that rises to one in three among school-age children. This demographic reality necessitates a shift in how we approach donor recruitment and education. We need to ensure that our messages reach and resonate with all communities, fostering a culture of donation that reflects the diversity of our society.

Educational programmes, such as our Mayrrow programme which has been running this month, play a vital role in this mission. By partnering with schools and community groups, we aim to instil the values of generosity and community spirit from a young age. When children learn about the impact of stem cell and organ donation, they not only become potential future donors but also influence their families and communities to consider registration. 

Today, let us take a moment to remember those who have lost their lives to blood cancer and those who continue to fight. We can honour their struggle by taking concrete steps to support them. If you haven’t already, please consider registering as a stem cell or bone marrow donor. Your decision could be the lifeline that someone desperately needs.

I want to extend my heartfelt gratitude to all our supporters, volunteers, and partners. Your unwavering dedication makes a world of difference. On this World Blood Cancer Day, let’s pledge to continue our efforts with renewed vigour and hope, knowing that together, we can save lives.

On behalf of everyone fighting blood cancer, and for a future where every patient finds their life-saving donor match, thank you. 

Team Margot
Together, saving lives

Posted in: Journal