It’s four years since Bryan’s life was saved by a total stranger and finally he got to meet his superhero.
For final year engineering student Lim Shi Hong, it was real proof that donating his bone marrow – something that just took a little time and some discomfort – had changed the world for an entire family and allowed one brave young boy to live.
Sign up as a bone marrow donor, help someone live!
A very big thank you to everyone for making our work here at BMDP a success! Here’s an update for the year 2012, take a look at what we’ve been doing to help our patients with Leukaemia and blood-related diseases.
Today, corporate organisations and community groups came together to launch ‘Cheek Swab Month’ – a month-long campaign to be held in October 2012 to raise awareness of bone marrow donation and to drive recruitment of volunteer bone marrow donors within their respective organisations.
The campaign grew from the concept of ‘Cheek Swab Day’ – a one-day campaign where many organisations in Singapore came together to promote awareness and recruit donors within their organisations. The brainchild of Terence Quek, CEO of Emergenetics International- Asia, the idea was fully supported by Young NTUC and The Bone Marrow Donor Programme (BMDP) – both lending their resources to realise ‘Cheek Swab Day’ on 16 May held at NTUC Centre.
“I was first inspired by the story of an American-born Chinese woman (Ms Janet Liang) suffering from acute leukemia and how her friends rallied to help her find a matching bone marrow donor through roadshows and social media (www.helpingjanet.com). Then I discovered we have local patients in exactly the same position and so wanted to rally Singaporeans to come forward to help Singaporeans and others suffering from blood-related diseases like Janet. Everyone has the power to save someone’s life just by donating our bone marrow and it’s such a simple gesture,” – Terence Quek
With the full support from Young NTUC, HP Singapore, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, Emergenetics International – Asia, Right Impact Training, Nails and Brows, Petmart, South West Community Development Council, People’s Association Youth Movement (PAYM) and Project Happy Feet, we look forward to a successful Cheek Swab Month in October!
Hear what Jane has to say about the launch of Cheek Swab Month
Find out how the origin of Cheek Swab Month came about
Cheek Swab Day on 16 May 2012 is a preview to Cheek Swab Month in October, and also marks the launch of BMDP’s blog and greater online outreach. Listen to Jane Prior, President, BMDP, as she outlines the organisation’s quest and its business of miracles.
I always say that we’re in the “business of miracles” because every single day we work with transplant teams in Singapore and from around the world to help them find a matching bone marrow donor for their patients. And I honestly believe it is a miracle when one individual makes the supreme act of commitment and comes forward to save the life of a total stranger – so when people ask, I’m in the business of miracles because what I do every day, saves lives.
For me it’s a very personal mission and with world-class medical treatment here in Singapore, not being able to find a matching donor is like being hungry looking through the supermarket window. The chance of a cure is so close – our transplant teams and hospitals are truly world-class – but all the medical breakthroughs in the world won’t help if we cannot identify that one individual who matches the patient.
Equally, it’s thrilling to meet different people every day who have heard about us and in whatever way they can want to help us in our mission. Most recently help from one individual has pulled together a one day event in May and launched a national one month programme – Cheek Swab Month – planned for October.
Not sure that we should describe him as a “miracle” but definitely a step in the right direction.
Not everyone knows it, but we are a GLOBAL organization – when a local search doesn’t find a match, we push out around the world to see which registers, from countries as far away as the US, UK, Germany and even Japan, can deliver a match for our local patients.
Likewise, we get searched by other countries and finding a match outside Singapore means that our global business operations need to kick in with our team of couriers crossing the globe to transport those life-saving blood stem cells.
April really was a crazy month breaking all records with a total of 12 transplants facilitated and at one stage, there were four BMDP volunteer couriers all in flight at the same time with one of the team crossing the Pacific twice in as many days. I bring this up for two reasons; first of all, our work is not just about building a local register, it is about delivering a service from start to finish – on time, on track and definitely on schedule.
Salute! to our amazing, selfless and committed courier team – great work and a milestone in our mission to save lives.
The Bone Marrow Donor Programme
8 Sinaran Drive #03-02 Novena Specialist Center Singapore 307470
Tel: (65) 6916 0370 Fax: (65) 6916 0371
Monday to Friday: 9.00 am – 6.00 pm Closed on Saturday, Sunday and Public Holidays