We are delighted to be working with former professional goalkeeper, Carl Ikeme, on a huge challenge for 2020. Carl, along with a group of other fundraisers, will be taking on a huge 555 mile cycle challenge across England to raise funds for the charity and awareness of the issues surrounding stem cell registration – especially among the BAME community.
As Carl says: “After my own diagnosis with leukaemia back in 2017, I discovered that my treatment options would be limited due to the lack of ethnic diversity on the stem cell register. Race Against Blood Cancer is trying to change all that; I’ve been involved with the team for more than a year now and so wanted to take on a challenge to raise funds and awareness, as well as creating opportunities to increase the number of potential stem cell donors on the register.
Though I was signed to Wolverhampton Wanderers for my entire career, I also played on loan for a number of other clubs and this gave me an idea. Building on the training I did for a recent bike ride, I’m planning to cycle 555 miles in six days, stopping off at all the clubs I represented during my career.
I’ll start at Middlesbrough on Monday 4 May, before winding my way down (and then back up!) the country, finishing at Wolves during half time on Saturday 9 May. The route I’ll take is as follows:
Day 1 (4 May) Middlesbrough – Accrington Stanley – Stockport County TOTAL 132 miles
Day 2 (5 May) Stockport County – Doncaster Rovers – Sheffield United TOTAL 83 miles
Day 3 (6 May) Sheffield United – Leicester City – Northampton (rest stop) TOTAL 110 miles
Day 4 (7 May) Northampton (rest stop) – Charlton Athletic – QPR TOTAL 90 miles
Day 5 (8 May) QPR – Southam (rest stop) TOTAL 90 miles
Day 6 (9 May) Southam (rest stop) – Wolves TOTAL 50 miles”
If you wish to sponsor Carl, please visit his fundraising page at www.virginmoneygiving.com/carlikeme or for more information about the event contact us
Today, five people will begin their search for a stem cell donor, could you buy them a second chance at life this Christmas?
In 2020, we aim to launch a pilot project in the West Midlands to recruit 11,000 new donors – especially those from minority groups – to the stem cell and bone marrow register.
We need your help to make this happen.
The Trustees at the Roger Counter Foundation have generously agreed to match the first £15,000 of donations to the project so any gift you make is doubled.
Please, help Christmas wishes come true.
A number of our supporters have kindly agreed to share their own stories in the hope you feel able to support this year’s appeal:
The Patient’s Story Kelly explains how important our community work is to families that are seeking a stem cell donor:
“We became involved with Race Against Blood Cancer through a member of the team when my son, Khaleel, relapsed with leukaemia. He needed an urgent stem cell transplant and the charity ran donor drives all over to try to get more people to sign up to the register and find him a match.
The charity makes a huge difference in the community, pretty much everyone locally now knows how important becoming a donor is. People always make a point of telling me how they’ve signed up at one of the donor drives as soon as they realise Khaleel’s my son. It makes me proud to know that he helped the charity to spread the word of the importance of being on the stem cell register.
Sadly Khaleel passed away after his transplant but we continue to work with Race Against Blood Cancer; every year the charity holds a fun day ‘Remembering Khaleel’ it’s always a great turn out and they sign up more new donors to help other patients seeking a match’.
The Donor’s Story
James explains why he’s supporting our appeal for funding this Christmas:
‘Friends of mine started the charity when one of our group was diagnosed with blood cancer, so I jumped at the chance to join the register. A couple of years passed and I was told I was a match for a patient in Australia; I went on to donate my stem cells shortly after.
To me, the work that the charity does is so important, in an ideal world there would be a presence in every community. Having a Community Engagement Manager in the West Midlands will mean an increase in the number of registered donors, resulting in more people across the world being offered the chance of life-saving treatment.”
The Volunteer’s Story
Our volunteer – and stem cell donor – Bex, is urging you to make a donation to support our work:
“My sister was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukaemia in 2016. Following her first bone marrow transplant, we became involved with Race Against Blood Cancer and have supported the team since.
Being visible on a local level not only increases support but helps to raise awareness of the charity’s message and ethos. It is essential that we get more people on the donor register – things could have been so different for my sister. Everyone diagnosed with a blood disorder should have an equal chance of survival.”
The Partner’s Story Our registry partner DKMS explains the impact of having a local presence, and with this much achieved at ad-hoc events, imagine what we could achieve with a full-time Community Engagement Manager:
“From the very beginning, the West Midlands Race Against Blood Cancer representatives have been fundamental in driving the recruitment of donors to the stem cell register, with the volunteer team holding more than 70 events.
The fact that there is a local presence offering awareness, education and support, provides those affected and their families with the knowledge that their community are able to help and want to support them at such a time. This is an enormous boost and cannot be underestimated. The reassurance that such an important message and service is being facilitated by another organisation dedicated to trying to offer patients a second chance at life is a fact that we at DKMS value greatly.”
Next time you are shopping online, think about raising money for us.
An initiative set up by Amazon will raise money for Race Against Blood Cancer while you shop – at no cost to you. Simply visit the Amazon Smile website, log in as usual and select Race Against Blood Cancer as the charity to benefit; we receive 0.5% of the value of eligible purchases – it all adds up.
Easyfundraising is another way you can support us from the comfort of your own home. Visit their site, register, and when you purchase from any one of more than 3700 retailers, Race Against Blood Cancer will receive a donation. All the top stores are on there – including Sainsbury’s, M&S, John Lewis and Argos to name a few. You can even support the charity with your weekend takeaway – Just Eat are registered on the site too!
We are delighted to announce that Wolves legend, Carl Ikeme, is supporting our ‘Be The One’ fundraising dinner taking place this Autumn.
Being held on Friday 6th September at Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton and hosted by Lynsey Hooper of Sky Sports fame, the event promises to be a must for our supporters – as well as any Wolves fan.
As well as hearing Carl speak about his work with the charity, for just £40 guests can enjoy entertainment, a three course meal and an auction of money-can’t-buy items, as well as raising valuable funds for the charity’s work.
As Carl says ‘Race Against Blood Cancer might be small, but it has huge ambition. After my own diagnosis with leukaemia back in 2017, I discovered that my treatment options would be limited due to the lack of ethnic diversity on the stem cell register. The charity is trying to change all that; I’ve been involved with the team for more than a year now and I’m delighted that they’ve asked me to support this event to raise funds and awareness for their continuing work”.
We are also delighted to announce that Eleanor Smith, MP for Wolverhampton South West, will be presenting our inaugural supporter awards at the event, where individuals and companies will be celebrated for their incredible efforts on the charity’s behalf.
All the money raised from the dinner event will help us to continue our work to raise awareness of stem cell donation and to increase the numbers and ethnic diversity of potential donors on the stem cell register.
If you are interested in buying tickets for the event, please visit our ticketing website here. However, if you’d like further information about the event or would like to know more about the sponsorship opportunities available then please contact Julie on firstname.lastname@example.org
This week saw the team do their first donor drive with Starcom, who are based in the BBC Televison centre in White City London.
The team set up for two days due to the number of occupants in the building and it was well worth it. There was a steady flow of people over the course of the event and everyone there was helpful and friendly.
In the end they managed to sign up a whopping 266 people!!!!! This is an incredible number and couldnt have been acheived without all the help we received. A massive thank you to Amy Kean and Lorena Di Lello for organising the event, Jayde Jarret, Ellis Parsons, Sarah Robson, Neville, Darren and Alex for helping out over the course of the two days. A special thank you to Emily Carroll from Homeslice for providing us with food over the two days and everyone who came down to sign up and continues to raise awareness.
What an awesome turnout on Friday and Saturday at local Mosques in Telford where we signed up people to the stem cell register in the hope of finding a donor for 6 year old local boy Ihsan Khan.
Our amazing team of volunteers led by our community engagement manager, Gemma Elsmore, managed to register 200 people in a combined time of just 6 hours!
Thank you to everyone involved and to all those from the community who registered and showed up to support Ihsan and his family – you have given hope to them and many others searching for lifesaving matches
We would also like to say a special thanks to both venues for allowing us to hold the donor drives at short notice, Imran (Ihsan’s Dad) and the amazing team that helped register on the day – you continue to blow us away with your generosity.
We’ve had an amazing response from the local community who have come together to spread awareness of this important cause – keep your eyes peeled for further donor drives. Or, if you’d like to register as a potential donor online, please click here
Six year old Ihsan Khan, from the Telford area, urgently needs a stem cell/bone marrow match to help treat his Aplastic Anaemia.
We are working with Ihsan’s family to recruit potential donors at events being held this week. These being:
Friday 3 May 2019 4.30-7.30pm Jamia Masjid Ghousia, Regent Street, Wellington, Telford, TF1 1PF
Saturday 4 May 2019 – 12-3pm Telford Central Mosque 88-90 King Street, Wellington, Telford, TF1 1NZ
If you are unable to get to either event but still want to sign up, you can do so here. Please help: even if you aren’t a match for Ihsan, you could be for one of the other 2,000 people in the UK currently waiting for a match.
Thank you so much to the Allscott Heath FC U9s team for raising money for our charity at their bag pack fundraiser at Asda in Donnington, Telford last Saturday. They raised an impressive £420.45 for Race Against Blood Cancer which will enable us to continue our work saving the lives of people with blood cancer.
We are so proud of the whole team of little lifesavers – and their siblings – for taking on this momentous challenge and giving up their time to support the charity Also thank you to Marcus, Morgan, Simra and Khalis for helping out too!
We’d also like to say a big thank you to ASDA Donnington for having us and to our community engagement manager Gemma Elsmore for co-ordinating the event.
Our grateful thanks to Rebecca Richards – the newest member of our volunteering team -who ran her first two donor drives for us last week. Her first took place at Bloor Homes (Midlands branch) where she signed up 20 potential stem cell donors and she then registered a further 20 at Sunday’s UK Triathlon Events Birmingham Run. Many thanks to Rebecca for a great week of sign ups, those who allowed us to host our donor drives and to all those potential lifesavers who registered with us.
We would also like to show our appreciation to Amie, James, Jen and Afy for volunteering their time last week and helping to help raise awareness of the work we do. Thank you everyone!
If you’d like to find out more about volunteering for the charity and running your own donor drives on our behalf, please contact us.