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Race Against Blood Cancer breaks new ground with first donor match

Wednesday 15th November 2017 will go down in Race Against Blood Cancer history as the day that one of the donors that the team registered went on to successfully donate their stem cells in hope of saving the life of a patient in need.

After coming close on no less than 10 other occasions, the team were overjoyed to learn that James Burton had been invited to Harley Street, London, to carry out the important yet simple procedure. What made the news even more special was that James registered at the launch event for the charity in the summer of 2015, where the team held a dinner, dance and golf tournament to announce their arrival as a burgeoning charity with big ambitions.

James had originally been contacted to be a match last year but at the last minute, to his disappointment he was informed that he wasn’t required. This time around everything was smooth sailing. James had a nurse visit him 4 days prior to heading to the clinic, to give him an injection to stimulate the growth of his white cells and travelled to London the day before the procedure.

In the end James harvested his stem cells over the course of two days with the procedure itself painless as expected. For those of you following the live video footage via Facebook, you’ll have seen a very relaxed James occupying himself by playing Football Manager throughout, while being amused by Alex Morrison, our Community Engagement lead.

We would like to say a massive thank you to James – words cannot express how grateful we are to him. We would also like to thank all of those who have donated and continue to support Race Against Blood Cancer, DKMS and the incredible staff on the day at The London Clinic.

Witnessing the life changing impact their efforts have had for a blood cancer patient in need, the team is as motivated as ever to find the next James Burton and have some great plans in place to continue raising awareness of the lack of diversity of those signed up to the donor register and running many more donor drives to find many more matches.

James Burton Donating Donation Process 3 Donation Process James Burton and friends


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Google tops off a successful May for the Community Engagement Team

May was a busy month for the Community Engagement team in London with various donor drives including one at Flagz Carnival in Croydon and at Soul’d Out in Central London.

The busy month was topped off with a drive at Google’s Tottenham Court Road offices on 30th May. Despite being during half term, Alex and his team managed to register 100 new potential donors.

With only 20 registrations by 1PM, the team took fate in their hands and went desk to desk. They were overwhelmed with the willingness and interest of Googlers to help the cause and have already arranged a second donor drive in the same location at the end of August!

Race Against Blood Cancer would like to give a special thanks to Sam Smith for organising the drive, Googlers for their interest in the cause and to Alex Kiffin who volunteered at all Race Against Blood Cancer drives in May.

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Team at Flagz Carnival

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If you would like to organise a donor drive or volunteer for us, please contact us at donordrives@raceagainstbloodcancer.com


Wristbands don't save lives. Signing up as a donor does.

Are you interested in saving lives? Join our Community Engagement Team

Race Against Blood Cancer is looking to add two part time employees to its Community Engagement Team to register lifesaving stem cell and bone marrow donors.

Successful applicants will be responsible for organising and leading their own donor drives at various locations where there are large crowds of people such as colleges, universities, sports clubs, places of work, music events etc., along with educating and signing up members of the public who are in attendance.

In the role the person will self-select where and when they want to do a donor drive, meaning there’s a lot of flexibility. The person will earn a day rate which will be dependent on how many donors they register on that day. Someone who has access to a car would be ideal given there will be travel involved.

If you’re interested please send your CV to lucy.baumgartner@raceagainstbloodcancer.com along with a 200 – 300 word description of why you believe you would be a good candidate for the role.

Some of the qualities we’re looking for include but aren’t limited to the following:

  • A passion for community or charity related projects
  • Comfortable engaging with members of the public
  • Good organisational skills
  • Proactive and considered a self-starter
  • Good oral and written communication skills

The first phase of the application process ends on Friday 24th March by which time you will need to have submitted your CV and reasons why you’d be suitable for the role. Shortlisted candidates will then be invited to participate in a telephone and in-person interview.

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The below video explains how someone becomes a potential donor. It’s worth noting that Race Against Blood Cancer and our Community Engagement team is only responsible for the registration process which involves filling out a short form and a cheek swab.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyB686Gnbbg


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Setting a new record of registrations at TCAT

The Race Against Blood Cancer team returned to Shropshire on Friday 22nd January for a donor drive at Telford College of Arts & Technology (TCAT).

While still early in the morning, the team was full of optimism and determined to beat the previous record held by PHD Media of 131 donor registrations achieved in one drive.

The day kicked off to a great start in the TCAT’s dance studio where the team was stationed, with a constant flow of visitors keen to sign up as stem cell donors. Queues even went up to 30 minutes at one point despite having 12 volunteers in full pace registering the participants and walking them through the process.

But the overall enthusiasm remained really high. Having been chosen as one of the college’s official charities for 2016, the team were particularly encouraged by how welcome they were made to feel by staff, students and a very special guest – Paralympic Gold medalist Mickey Bushell.

Once a TCAT student himself, Mickey dropped in to show his support in the charity’s fight against blood cancer – “I was happy to be invited over today and see the charity’s great work.  I encourage everyone to join the Race Against Blood Cancer. It’s such a great cause and a simple process which can lead to you saving someone’s life.”

And after an amazing day and 5 hours of frantic swabbing, the team managed to break the record, registering 147 new stem cell and bone marrow donor registrations in one drive.

We would like to thank the amazing team of volunteers – Joe Bates, Emma Brown, Natasha Brown, Gail Fisk, Connor Holbrook, Bethan Brown, Jason Cook, Ben Westwood, Carol Goodfellow, Sarah Drummond and Devon Peart – and everyone who came down to support and sign up on the day. This wouldn’t have been possible without you.

And finally, a special thanks to Lauren Harris the Enrichment Coordinator at TCAT who helped organise the event in the first place and eagerly supported the team throughout the day. We hope to be invited back again next year!

Gold Medalist Mickey Bushal at the TCAT Donor Drive

An amazing flow of interest and registrations throughout the day

A volunteer to help save lives

Stem Cell Registration Process

Race Against Blood Cancer Team in Shropshire

Emma & Bethan

Wristbands don't save lives. Signing up as a donor does.


What can I do to help? You can help save a life in 1 of 4 ways - find out more
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Donor register
It takes just a few minutes to sign up & help fight blood cancer
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Get involved
With campaigns & fundraising events that help save lives
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Donate funds
Please make a donation so we can get the message out there
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Raise awareness
Help us show how big the problem is & how easy the solution