The Adventures of Cindy Li
Bone Marrow Donation
June 29 , 2007
Once upon a time
I flew back into town after a few days at the Miami office. I had been looking forward to attending the 9:20 open house swing dance party for the last month, when my friend Arun called up and said that his Indian community was heading down to a bone marrow donation party. He said this person in his community only had 15 days to find a donor. I was with Francisco and Mark and told them the story. If it was your brother/sister/friend wouldn’t you want everyone that could help to pitch in? Mark being the awesome guy he is said, “Well I have to spend $10 on something it might as well be a good cause.” So we headed to Broadway.
So we walk in and pay the $10 cover, there is a DJ booth. There were people in the front filling out applications to donate. Arun showed up and he told us about why he was helping out. He said that the best chance to find a donor for the guy was to find someone in their own ethnicity pool. Which totally makes sense. There is a huge need for bone marrow donations from the minorities. I wonder why? I know that once I told my mother that I was a organ donor she wasn’t thrilled. I think she remarked something about being buried in one piece was sacred. For me if I wasn’t around then there was no need to be a pack rat and save my eyes if wasn’t using it any more…someone else could use it. Right?
“The NMDP Registry includes more than 6 million volunteer adult donors and more than 50,000 cord blood units. Patients searching the NMDP Registry also have access to an additional 4 million volunteer donors through arrangements with international cooperative registries. However, some patients are unable to find a suitable match because their tissue traits are uncommon. Some tissue traits are more likely to be found among people of a particular racial or ethnic heritage. That is why a pressing need remains for more American Indian and Alaska Native, Asian, Black and African American, Hispanic and Latino, Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander, and multiple-race donors.” -From the marrow.org website
What to do when you get tested to see if you can be a donor
Arun filled out the packet. I got named as a contact since I was standing there and we’re good friends. We all pitched in to help Arun. I held the bar code and Mark held the swab cardboard container as Arun followed the directions.
- Swabbed for about 10 seconds
- Put bar code on the swab
- Repeat for 3 more times
- Close and seal to send off for testing
So what you can do to help
Here’s a website to be registered in the national marrow donor list.