Anthony Nolan success at RAF Halton

Following on from the success story of RAF Marham and Anthony Nolan on the BBC One Show in March this year, Air Officer Commanding (AOC) 1 Group and 22 Group has supported the idea that Janet Qualters from Tactical Imagery-Intelligence Wing (TIW) and the rest of the TIW charity team from RAF Marham take the first ever Anthony Nolan presentation to new recruits at RAF Halton.

The Halton event took place at the end of last year, and received an unprecedented level of support with 72 new volunteer stem cell donors recruited by Wg Cdr Williamson, SAC Stride, SAC Boardman, LCpl Aldred and Janet.

At the request of AOC 1Group, Air-Vice Marshal Gary Waterfall, the team organised for a film to be made for future events and which will be shown on a 10 week rotation to all new recruits, at RAF Halton, RAF Cosford and RAF Cranwell. The filmwillprovide information about becoming a stem cell donor and help dispel the myths which surround the process. It is hoped that the number of new stem cell donors recruited onto the register can be doubled if not tripled, in turn working towards saving more lives.

Mr Joe Crowley who often appears on the BBC’s One Show and who is an staunch supporter of Anthony Nolan was in attendance, gave the team a lot of help and support and kindly volunteered to provide the voice over for the film.

Janet said: “After many years of volunteering for the Anthony Nolancharity and spreading the word about the Stem Cell Register, we have started to realise our main ambition of offering all new recruits who are in that magic age bracket of 16 – 30 the opportunity to join the volunteer stem cell register. The events which we hold to raise awareness are called ‘clinics’ as we are trained in the skills to take saliva samples from volunteers, store them correctly and despatch them to the Anthony Nolan Lab. The response was overwhelming and very humbling; that these young recruits were so keen to help people who desperately need it. Once they realise how simple the procedure is, it became obvious that we were going to be kept extremely busy signing them all up. I would just like to thank all those who helped us sign up 72 new volunteer donors and now hope to continue to do so on a regular basis.”

Editors Notes:

Anthony Nolan has supplied a list of up-to-the minute facts which demonstrate the importance of having as many eligible people on the register as possible. The more possible donors, the greater the odds of finding someone who will be a match and making the potentially life-saving donations.

  • It costs £60 to add each new person to the register.
  • Young men aged 16-30 are the most likely to be chosen to donate (51%/over half of those who donated in the last two years are young men) but they only make up 15% of the register.
  • Early indications from Anthony Nolan’s  recent research are confirming that the use of donors under 30 is associated with a trend towards better survival rates.
  • You have a 1 in 900 chance of being asked to donate stem cells or bone marrow in the next five years. Your chance of being chosen to donate depends on your age and gender
  • A young man aged 16-30 has a 1 in 200 chance of being chosen to donate
  • Someone is diagnosed with blood cancer every 20 minutes.
  • Anthony Nolan have given the chance of life to three people every day
  • Anthony Nolan helped over 1,200 people last year
  • Since 1974, Anthony Nolan has given over 14,000 people the chance of life
  • Around 2,000 people in the UK need a bone marrow or stem cell transplant each year
  • 1 in 8 people won’t find the best possible donor match
  • By 2020 over 11,000 people with blood cancer or blood disorders in the UK will need a curative stem cell transplant.




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