Lifesaving year for Leeds volunteers

Leeds Marrow volunteers doing the Three Peaks Challenge.
Leeds Marrow volunteers doing the Three Peaks Challenge.
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More than 1,000 potential life-savers have signed up to the Anthony Nolan register thanks to the efforts of students.

Leeds Marrow, a University of Leeds student volunteer group that supports the work of blood cancer charity Anthony Nolan, has spent the academic year running recruitment events to sign students up to the stem cell register.

The group’s recruitment clinics have resulted in more than 1,000 potential lifesavers added to the Anthony Nolan register.

Volunteers have also raised £5,000 for the charity by tackling the Three Peaks Challenge, Leeds Half Marathon and a gruelling 24-hour cycle.

Leeds Marrow president, Grace Lowe, said: “It’s heart-warming to see just how many students would be willing to selflessly donate their stem cells to give people with blood cancer a last chance for a cure.

“Sadly there are a lot of myths surrounding stem cell donation but we are here to tell people how easy it is to sign up and donate. All the students have to do is fill out a form and spit in a tube. If you are called up to donate one day donating is just like giving blood.

“It costs around £60 to sign someone onto the register so it’s amazing we have managed to raise £5,000 which could mean we have funded 83 potential donors.”

This year Anthony Nolan revealed that one in four people who go on to donate their stem cells were signed up at university. Leeds Marrow is urging new students to join the Anthony Nolan register. Every 20 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer.

Charlotte Connolly, marrow programme lead at Anthony Nolan, said: “Young people are most likely to be chosen to donate so Marrow’s work is key to helping us save more lives. Whether it’s spreading the word, recruiting or fundraising, together they make such a big difference, it’s an incredible thing.”

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