The Bone Marrow Donor Programme has been selected as the charity partner for Elite Model Look when the world’s leading model search event conducts an island-wide search for Singapore’s new “face”.
With a line-up of 6 events happening over the next five weeks, “Match For Life” (the donor recruitment organisation within the BMDP) will connect with hundreds of young people providing them with a chance to sign up as a volunteer bone marrow donor.
According to BMDP President, Jane Prior, “modeling and bone marrow transplants seem to be worlds apart, but we are both working against very similar odds. Elite Model Look will select just 15 finalists out of a global line-up of 350,000 entrants – while the chances of being a match for a patient are around 1 in 20,000.00. While we can’t offer fame and fortune, our donors sign up for a chance to win the greatest prize of all – to save another person’s life.”
Match For Life will be on-site at all the Elite Model Look Singapore events and while waiting to audition, aspiring models will have an opportunity to learn more about the life-saving work of the BMDP and to sign up as a “Match for Life” and become a volunteer bone marrow donor. There is strong medical evidence to support younger donors being more effective and most importantly they are available through the BMDP register for longer as the cut-off age is currently age 60.
According to the Singapore Director of Elite Model Look, Eric Ceret, “this is a first time that Elite Model Look has tied up with a non-profit organization anywhere in Asia and I am excited that we have found great synergy between ourselves and Match For Life. The world of the Supermodel must go beyond the superficial and I am proud that leading Elite models, including Gisele Bundchen and Cindy Crawford, are very well known for their charity work. This partnership is a statement that with success comes responsibility”.
Match For Life targets to recruit 3,000 new donors onto the BMDP Register throughout October in order to increase the chances of finding that life-saving donor for every patient who needs a transplant. A volunteer donor needs to provide a small tissue sample – usually a swab from inside the cheek – that is sent for tissue typing to then add the details to the BMDP register. Only if and when identified as a match in the future for a patient does the donor actually have to donate their bone marrow but with the odds of finding a match being 1 in 20,000, each new name that is added is potentially another life saved. In Singapore every day 6 people are diagnosed with one of the potentially fatal blood diseases where the only chance of survival may be a successful bone marrow transplant.