Multicultural Communities Targeted In Bone Marrow Drive

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14th July 2008, 02:55pm - Views: 717

Culture Ethnic Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry 1 image


      July 14, 2008

Multicultural communities targeted in bone marrow drive

Sydney - Melbourne

July 21 - July 31

A 13-year-old boy with leukemia - who has convinced over 10,000 Americans to become bone

marrow donors - is coming to Australia next week to do the same here.

Pat Pedraja started Driving for Donors after he watched other young patients die while they waited

for a bone marrow transplant. He has spent the past 18 months driving across the United States

twice in his “Donormobile” to encourage more donors to register. Last year he won a CNN Heroes

Award and has now been nominated for Teen Choice and Keep Going Hall of Fame.

Around 10,000 Australians are diagnosed each year with leukemia or other fatal blood disorders. A

bone marrow or haemopoietic stem cells transplant is the only possible cure for many of these

patients, yet only one in three will find a match within their family. The rest rely on the Australian

Bone Marrow Donor Registry which scans registries around the world to find match. 

The Australian Bone Marrow Donor Registry requires around 5,000 new donors to be registered

each year. Donors must be aged between 18 and 40 at registration. And because a person’s

tissue type is directly related to his or her ethnic origin, we need donors of different

ethnic backgrounds.

From July 21 to July 31, Pat will be raising awareness about the need for bone

marrow donors across Sydney and Melbourne. He will be meeting with young

Australian bone marrow recipients and donors from a variety of backgrounds,

and is available for interviews and photographs.

For details and interviews, contact Julie Sheather (0409) 514 643 or

Becoming a donor is easy.  You can join the ABMDR at any Australian Red Cross Blood Service

donor centre. Once registered, the ABMDR will contact you if you are identified as a potential

match for a patient.

Find out more details at or by calling 13 14 95.  

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