Gift of Life Australia (GOLA) was initially established in 1994 a by the late Shula Endrey Walder, in association with Wolper Jewish Hospital, to recruit potential donors to the Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry (ABMDR). This program was run predominantly in the Jewish community, with regular testing sessions at Wolper Jewish Hospital and other Jewish communal events being held at the time.
Gift of Life Australia, is supported by Wolper Jewish Hospital and, more recently, the Australian Tissue Donation Network. Both are not-for-profit organisations that are working closely with, the Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry to establish a database of potential bone marrow donors primarily for under-represented ethnic groups.
The ABMDR has identified the ideal type of potential donors to be males between the ages of 18-30 years. By registering males of this demographic from a diverse range of cultural and ethnic backgrounds, a wide immunological range of potential donors will be obtained. This increase in donors will potentially reduce the need for overseas donors or imperfectly matched donors.
With the re-commencement of the cheek swab program, Gift of Life Australia aims to attend various sporting club events as well as eliciting support online to reactivate our recruitment drive. Education regarding the program will be provided prior to the issue of cheek swabs to enable a person to make the decision, more easily, to join the ABMDR and have the opportunity to save a life.