Every 40 minutes someone in Australia is diagnosed with blood cancer, and for many a blood stem cell transplant from a complete stranger is their only hope. Younger donors result in better outcomes for patients, so we urgently need 18-30 year olds to register and increase their chances of finding the best possible match.
Gift of Life Australia (GOLA) was initially established in 1994 and run by the late Shula Endrey Walder, in association with Wolper Jewish Hospital to recruit potential donors to the Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry (ABMDR) run by Red Cross. This program was run predominantly in the Jewish Community, where regular testing sessions at Wolper Jewish Hospital and at Jewish communal events were held. This program has been reinvigorated by joining the Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry (ABMDR) Strength to Give pilot Donor Recruitment Program.
The Gift of Life Australia (GOLA) in association with the Australian Tissue Donation Network, Wolper Jewish Hospital and the Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry are not-for-profit organisations helping to establish a database of potential bone marrow donors. The ideal type of potential donors has been identified as males between the ages of 18-30 years. By registering males of this age from a diverse range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds, a wide immunological range of potential donors will be obtained. This increase of donors will potentially reduce the need for overseas donors or imperfectly matched donors. In the coming months GOLA will be attending various sporting clubs as part of the recruitment drive, where education regarding the program is provided and cheek swabs and registrations can be performed.