Had To Share: Guest Blogger – Charmaine Swimpson talks Bone MarrowPublished by Torrence Glenn on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 6:37 pm.
Sup folks, I’m really excited about today’s guest blog. I’m not just excited because Charmain Swimpson who was a Sunday Best Season 3 background singer, sings with Kirk Franklin and others is stopping by. I’m excited because this post isn’t about a Pastor scandal, a good or bad CD, or anything like that. Today Charmaine is going to share some serious info that could help save someone’s life. Let’s get to it.
***passes mic to Charmaine***
Hey Torrence G. Well, first let me say thank you for this opportunity to speak about this disease, and to inform our community about Bone Marrow and Stem Cell Transplants! My father, Marvin Swimpson, was diagnosed with Lymphoma (Cancer of the immune system) a year ago. He was pronounced CANCER FREE in February of this year. Unfortunately the disease returned in June, and on top of that he was told he needed a Stem Cell Transplant in order to have the best possible chance of being cured. He is now on the National Bone Marrow Transplant Registry with the hopes of finding the perfect match. He’s been searching for the past month and a half. Since the report, we have been learning more and more about the National Marrow Donor Program. This is the program people join in hopes of having the chance to be a match for someone in need of a cure. I have dedicated my time daily by reaching out to as many people as I can to inform them, and to try to be a part of saving my fathers life, and the life of someone else in need! Although it may sound weird, it is VERY difficult to find a match within a patients own family. It’s also difficult for African Americans to find matches within their own ethnic group, even though this is the best chance a patient has for finding a match! The percentage of African American Donors is very LOW. Everyday the National Bone Marrow Program seeks to increase those numbers. And I’m doing everything I can to assist them! Now, when people hear the words ” Bone Marrow Transplant” they immediately think of “PAIN”, but this is not the case at all. Over time scientists’ have discovered a method which allows the donors experience to be totally different from the actual patients! It’s basically called a “Glorified Blood Transfusion” or Giving Blood. Joining the registry is very easy. All one has to do is visit www.bethematch.org to complete the online form and order their self-test registration kit. The kit will include all materials needed to successfully swab the inside of their cheeks, and once that’s done they just send it back to the return address. Although the donor is not financially responsible to join, donations are always gladly accepted. Torrence, I am so excited about this venture to help save my dad’s life and the lives of others. And I pray the public will assist me in helping to make a difference. Making a difference EVERY DAY!
***takes mic from Charmaine***
Thanks Charmaine for schooling us on this issue! Ok, I feel really stupid right now and let me tell you why. I’ve always known that finding bone marrow matches has been a challenge in the Black community has been a challenge because so many of us aren’t listed as possible donors. But what I did not know was how easy it was to test to see if you’re a match, nor that they had found a way for you to be a donor that didn’t involve this big painful surgery. This changes everything! Any of you who can, please join the National Marrow Donor Program. Your decision to do that may mean life or death for someone you match with!