International blood cancer charity DKMS recently hosted a special event at Winstanley College where students and staff alike registered to go on standby as potential blood stem cell donors in the hope of saving the lives of patients with blood cancer.
As in 2017, the event was a huge success with 143 students and staff members registering as potential donors, taking the total number from Winstanley College to 331. We were also delighted to hear that our former student Ben Agnew was recently matched with a patient and has already had his stem cells collected. Hopefully this will offer Ben’s ‘genetic twin’ a second chance at life!
Every 20 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer such as Leukaemia, Lymphoma and Myeloma. For many people with blood cancer, a blood stem cell donation from a matching donor will either be their best or only chance of survival. However, only one in three people in need of a blood stem cell donation will find a suitable matching donor within their own family; meaning they will have to rely on an unrelated donor from the registry.
DKMS Project Manager Patrick Ryan who coordinated the event has been involved with the charity for over two years; running college and university roadshows on a national scale with the aim of recruiting as much of the student population as possible – the most sought after donor demographic. Patrick said: “This was another fantastic result. I would like to thank Winstanley College for the opportunity to promote the importance of blood stem cell donation; it truly does offer a second chance at life. Thank you to all those who have registered and the volunteers from Student Union; you have all been brilliant.”