Blood donor Andrew Keeping shares his story.
“On 24th February 2014 our world was turned upside down. My son Geraint who was a fit and healthy person who loved playing football, walking and socialising with his mates and girlfriend was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia.
I was told to take Geraint straight to the Teenage Cancer Trust (TCT) Unit at the University of Wales Hospital Cardiff. It felt unreal. Things like this happen to other people! The staff and facilities were excellent and I thought if Geraint has to be somewhere to make him well, this is where I want him to be. It has been 15 weeks since he was diagnosed and the nurses, doctors and consultants have been brilliant.
Geraint has to have a bone marrow transplant and unfortunately there isn’t a match for him on the world bone marrow register. We need to find a match in the next few weeks.
Since starting his treatment Geraint has also had to have a number of blood and platelet transfusions.
I work for Coleg y Cymoedd and up until a year ago so did Geraint. We’ve asked the staff and students from all our campuses to help by giving blood and going onto the bone marrow register to help find a match for Geraint.
The response has been incredible, I think it has really hit home to the students that if a fit young man like Geraint can have leukaemia so could they.”
Geraint is aged 21 and lives in the Rhondda – he is one of thousands of patients searching for a suitable match. With your help, we could save many more lives throughout the world.
Please ask when you next give blood about joining the bone marrow register.