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Leukemia Survivor Hosting Bone Marrow Registry Drive on Sunday

Santa Barbara residents can take the first step to save a life using a simple cheek swab by joining the Be The Match Registry from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Sunday, March 3, at Savoy Café & Deli, 24 W. Figueroa St. in Santa Barbara.

Donors with diverse racial or ethnic backgrounds are especially needed, as patients in need of a transplant are most likely to match someone who shares their same race or ethnicity.

The total cost to add each new member to the Be The Match Registry is about $100. Be The Match® relies on financial contributions to help cover these costs.

Contributions to the Be The Match Foundation help add more members to the Be The Match Registry, giving more patients hope for a cure. Those joining the Be The Match Registry are asked to give what they can.

Krista English, a local Santa Barbara resident and mother of two, is celebrating four years since her cord blood transplant. The two-time leukemia survivor had a very tough battle with leukemia, and doctors thought she wouldn’t survive. She is now adding donors to the Be The Match registry in honor of her successful fight against AML.

For thousands of patients with life-threatening diseases such as leukemia and lymphoma, a marrow transplant from an unrelated donor is their best or only hope for a cure. These patients depend on the Be The Match Registry to find a match — and a second chance at life.

While many patients do find the lifesaving match they need each year, more donors are needed to help increase the likelihood that all patients will find a match. Financial contributions to Be The Match Foundation and volunteers are also needed to help save lives.

Be The Match helps patients with leukemia, lymphoma and other diseases who need a marrow or umbilical cord blood transplant. People can join the Be The Match Registry, the world’s largest listing of potential marrow donors and donated cord blood units, contribute financially and volunteer. Patients and their families can also turn to Be The Match for support and resources before, during and after transplant. Be The Match is operated by the National Marrow Donor Program, a nonprofit organization that matches patients with donors, educates health care professionals and conducts research so more lives can be saved.

For more information, click here or call 800.MARROW.2.

— Krista English is a Santa Barbara resident and two-time leukemia survivor.

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