A “thank you” from England

A Croatian lady’s stem cells have saved the life of a patient in England. The patient sent a thank you note to the Croatian Registry of voluntary bone marrow and stem cell donors and requested that his words of gratitude be forwarded to his savior!

A matching donor was found in the Croatian Registry that fulfilled a request made by the English Registry. Anthony Nolan carried out the procedure of collecting the stem cells that were delivered to England on October 7, 2009. A few months later we were all pleased to hear the wonderful news and receive the words of gratitude that the patient in England sent to his savior, the stem cell donor, with the message that he was feeling well.

Of course, we are talking about a non-related donor. This means that if a patient in any part of the world cannot get bone marrow from a close blood relative, that patient can search for a donor in Croatia, thanks to our Registry.

In the last three years, the Foundation has travelled all around Croatia, from Istria and Slavonia to Dubrovnik. They have travelled in the rain, snow and ice, and there isn’t a place or city from where blood samples haven’t been brought to Zagreb. Croatia has been united and the effort has paid off.

What could be more rewarding than knowing that our donation, work and effort saved the life of someone’s sister, mother, father or brother? Throughout the last three years, the avalanche that was set off by Ana Rukavina has awoken the desire for humanity in many people, and thereby led to an increase in the number of donators. At the beginning of 2007, the Croatian Registry of voluntary donors only had 156 donors, while today that number has reached an almost unbelievable 33,000, and 13,000 samples have already been tissue typed.

Thanks to your donations and calls to the Foundation’s humanitarian hotline number, 1,000 new blood samples are undergoing tissue typing. We also hope that with the help of the government of the Republic of Croatia the Foundation will be included in the state budget again this year. Therefore, we expect that by the end of the year we could have approximately 18,000 samples tissue typed, and the great hope that there will be even more wonderful news of this kind.

And so, with everybody’s help, little by little, we hope that we will tissue type the remaining 20,000 samples, which signify life and the fulfillment of a dream and mission.

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