|Southeastern alumna and Good Morning America host Robin Roberts is recovering from a life-saving bone marrow transplant to battle the blood disorder Myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). Robin was fortunate because her sister, Sally-Ann, was a "match" and could give marrow for the transplant. Many others are not so lucky and may wait for years to find a match from the national donor database. This database is a literal life line to those who need marrow transplants for leukemia, lymphoma, sickle cell anemia and other blood diseases. Many more donors are needed.|
To honor Robin, Sally-Ann and many others who are fighting against these diseases as patients and donors, Southeastern Louisiana University is launching "Swabbin' for Robin", a campaign to register prospective donors for the National Marrow Donor Program database. Through a partnership with Be The Match, a national non-profit organization that administers the database/registry, Southeastern will work to add donors through "swabbing" events over the course of the 2012-13 academic year.
A campus-wide group of Southeastern students is working closely with campus administrators to focus on educating the campus and the regional community about the critical need for prospective marrow donors. The focal point of the effort is a series of nearly 20 events at which people can be swabbed for DNA and entered into the bone marrow database. Swabbing is quick, easy and painless--donors simply swab themselves on the inside of the mouth with large swabs provided in individual kits.
Since this effort is in honor of Robin Roberts, and since it involves swabbing for DNA, Southeastern developed the theme "Swabbin' for Robin" and the Twitter handle #Swabbin4Robin. While the "4" is a fun and easy shortening of "for" in the title, it is also a meaningful symbol of the 4 points of Robin's mantra - Light, Love, Power and Presence.
Join the fight against blood diseases with Swabbin' for Robin! How you can help:
- Like us on Facebook
- Follow us on Twitter
- Make a donation to Be The Match through the Southeastern portal
- Attend an event and be swabbed to join the national donor database
- Spread the word; educate your family and friends about the need for donors
Check back for more dates as the schedule is finalized and completed through May 2013.