I joined the bone marrow registry when I was in college and one of the things I make sure to change every time I move is my contact info with the National Marrow Donor Program. Even though re-registering doesn’t help, I know there are a lot of folks out there who simply haven’t registered themselves yet. So if you’re one of those people who haven’t gotten around to getting yourself in the registry, it’s free to do and really easy– just a cheek-swab!– you can do it by mail! More info is below and I’m honored to have been asked to join this online effort alongside by Asian American blogger family.
The following is cross-posted from 8Asians.com:
Janet Liang, a vibrant 25 year old UCLA graduate and a leukemia patient who spent years championing leukemia awareness and Asian American bone marrow registration, passed away last week. In Janet’s memory,
8Asians jozjozjoz is partnering with a network of other prominent Asian American sites to host 170 in 7: A Bone Marrow Cyberdrive in Memory of Janet Liang.
Leukemia is a type of blood cancer and the most common cancer to affect children and young teens. Treatment to save a leukemia patient’s life often requires a bone marrow transplant from a “perfect match” donor – a donor whose blood matches a recipient’s blood for 10 separate genetic markers.
Unfortunately, Asian American and other non-White leukemia patients are much less likely to find a “perfect match” donor than White leukemia patients. This is because Asian Americans and other minorities are significantly underrepresented in Be The Match, the national bone marrow registry used to search for and match potential bone marrow donors with recipients.
Janet made it her mission to register Asian American bone marrow donors, and thanks in part to her efforts, at least 18 bone marrow matches were made to recipients nationwide. However, last week, Janet passed away without finding a perfect match for herself. Today, many other Asian American leukemia patients are still waiting to find their perfect match, like 2-year-old Jeremy who was recently diagnosed with leukemia. To celebrate Janet’s life and her legacy, we want to register 170 new potential bone marrow donors in Janet’s name in just 7 days.
Be one of the 170 in 7:
Registration is free for donors, convenient and secure. Here’s how to be one of the 170 in 7:
- Click on the link: http://join.bethematch.org/TeamJanet. Fill out the forms to request a free, do-it-yourself cheek swab kit.
- Tweet about it using #170in7 to be counted!
If you don’t have a Twitter account, send an email to jenn [at] reappropriate [dot] co to be counted!
And that’s it! Less than ten minutes of your time can help you save a life!
In about one month, a cheek swab kit will be sent to you in the mail, along with instructions and a pre-paid return envelope. Follow the instructions to swab your cheeks and return the kit. If you are matched (only 1 in 540 registered donors are ever matched), you will then be contacted and asked if you would like to donate your bone marrow. Registering is not a commitment that you must donate; it is only to help match recipients with potential donors.
Most donors are never matched. But if you are matched and if you do choose to donate your bone marrow, that donation is likely to save a young person’s life.
Other Ways to Help Out: Donate to AADP and/or to the Liang family
Donor registration is free for the donor because AADP and other non-profit organizations cover the costs of donor registration through charitable donations. If you are unable to register as a bone marrow donor, please donate to AADP to help fund registration costs for other donors, or to the Liang family (PayPal account using firstname.lastname@example.org as the recipient, or checks payable to “Janet Liang” sent to PO box 1526, Pleasanton CA 94566).
Other Ways to Help Out: Spread the Word
If you are already registered, please help spread the word about the 170 in 7 bone marrow cyberdrive through Twitter and Facebook. If you would like to join your site to this partnership or if you would like more information about the 170 in 7 bone marrow cyberdrive, please go here.
170 in 7 is a partnership between the following: 8Asians, AARisings, Angry Asian Man, Asia Pacific Arts, Asian American Donor Program (AADP), ChannelAPA, Jeff Yang (columnist, Wall Street Journal Online), Reappropriate, Rice Daddies, Schema Magazine, and a special partnership with Team Janet and Jeremy Needs You and more.
About the Drive
170 in 7 will be running from September 17, 2012 to September 24, 2012. Our goal is to register 170 new potential bone marrow donors in 7 days in memory of Janet Liang.
We would love to add more partners to this week-long bone marrow donor cyberdrive. To join, please contact Jenn for more information.
To Spread the Word
Please tweet about the campaign using the hashtag #170in7. Buttons and banners are available for use with this campaign.