Sign up to be a lifesaver at DMU next week

Students and staff can sign up to be a potential lifesaver by joining the national stem cell register at an event next week.

#DMUlocal, the DSU and the Rik Basra Leukaemia Campaign are holding a recruitment drive at the Campus Centre on Tuesday, March 26 from 9am to 3pm.

Rik picture

Anyone aged 16 to 30 can join the register, and it could not be easier – all it takes is a simple cheek swab and filling in a form.

Specially-trained student volunteers will be on hand to help people through the process which takes less than 10 minutes.

Student volunteers have been recruited by #DMUlocal to support the event. One of them is first year Pharmacy student Alex Scarbo.

Alex is on the stem cell register himself and is also a blood donor. He began volunteering with the Rik Basra Leukaemia Trust last year.

He said: “I volunteered at the Robert Smyth Academy and I really enjoyed it. It felt worthwhile and the number of people who were involved and signing up 

He said: “Joining the register is so simple. All they have to do is fill in a form which takes three to four minutes and then have a cheek swab.”

There will be prizes on offer for students who join the register at different milestones during the day, such as the first, the 50th the 100th to sign up.

And De Montfort Students’ Union will also be giving away two £100 prizes for the society and the sports team who manage to recruit the most students, regardless whether they’re in their student group or not!

Rik Basra, whose own life was saved by a transplant, runs events as part of the Rik Basra Leukaemia Campaign, said: "We're delighted once again to be working with De Montfort University to recruit lifesavers to the Anthony Nolan UK registry.

"The stem cell registration drives at DMU are always busy and fun. I'd encourage any student or staff member aged 16-30 to come along and spend just 10 minutes to register. Fill in a form and give a mouth swab its the first important step to potentially saving a life!"

Demon FM are also going to be broadcasting live from the steps of the Campus Centre during the whole day.

Mollie Footit, DSU Deputy President (Education) said: “I’m so excited that we are hosting the stem cell drive again, this year will be bigger and better than last with a friendly DSU competition on the side! It’s so easy to join the register and knowing that you have the ability to save a life is unfathomable”. 

DMU executive officer, Karla Juerges, joined the register after a drive at DMU in 2014. She was found to be a match for a little girl with blood cancer.

By joining the register, you could be a potential match for someone with blood cancer.

The swab is sent off to the Anthony Nolan charity to be tested and added to the national stem cell register. Every time someone needs a transplant, they’ll check to see if you’re a match – and the 670,000 other incredible individuals on the register.

Statistics show that young people are more likely to be chosen as donors in lifesaving transplants, and Anthony Nolan’s research has shown that younger donors lead to better survival rates in patients. 

DMU is part of Leicestershire UNItes, with the University of Leicester and Loughborough University. Regular recruitment drives are held at the universities for students to join the UK stem cell register. 

Posted on: Thursday 21 March 2019

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