” When I heard from doctors, that I’m the only person who can save a little one, I couldn’t think twice to donate my Blood Stem Cells! “

Valentine’s Days were never special for me except for 2020, this year I did a Blood Stem Cell Donation for a 4 years old with a blood related condition called Thalassemia (Inability to produce Hemoglobin). I always wanted to donate blood and feel jealous of others who could donate blood, while I was rejected every time. I was excited when I got this one in a million opportunity to donate Blood Stem Cells.

I registered as a potential Blood Stem Cell Donor with DATRI Blood Stem Cell Donor Registry during my graduation days in MES Arts and Science College, Ponnani in Malappuram District, Kerala in 2016. It was a simple procedure, to give inner cheek(swab) samples to test the HLA which determines match for Blood Stem Cell Donation. I got a call from DATRI in 2020 informing my HLA match for a kid battling with Thalassemia who was undergoing periodic blood transfusions to stay alive. I was completely convinced to proceed when I was told I was the only match for the kid.

In vain, my parents were initially scared and didn’t support me in my decision. Thus I checked with my brother and would-be husband for guidance and support. Meanwhile DATRI coordinator connected me to another female donor and she helped me a lot in reconfirming my decision to donate by sharing her real donation experience. We also cross checked with few doctors about the safety side of donating blood stem cells.

After a complete health check up to ensure my safety, they proceeded to 5 days’ injections to bring stem cells into blood, where I survived my fears to needles and 5th day, on a valentine I shared my stem cells to little one. It is the happiest valentine I could ever get.

DATRI Team in Kerala provided all the support to make this donation happen.  I’m thankful to DATRI team for providing comfort at each step of arrangements.  I was asked to travel from my hometown in Malappuram to Cochin for Health Check Up first and again for Donation. As per our convenience DATRI arranged up and down travel for me and family along with a female coordinator travelled with us as per requested. During the entire formalities of Health Check Up and Consultation at AIMS Cochin, DATRI Team members were with us. DATRI technician visited me at home for 4 days prior to donation for administrating injections and tracked my blood counts. Everything went very well and now it’s a long wait to hear from the little one. As per registry rules by DATRI, there is 1 year of waiting time post donation for direct communication between Donor and Recipient.

About DATRI:

DATRI is a Not-for-Profit organization that was founded in 2009 with a mission to save lives of those suffering from life threatening fatal blood disorders like Blood Cancer, Thalassemia, Aplastic Anemia, Sickle Cell Anaemia etc.

DATRI is registered with Government of India as a Section 8 organization and all monetary contributions towards DATRI are subject to 80G exemption.


Tags: Blood Stem Cell Donation Experience | Female Blood Stem Cell Donor from Kerala | Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Donation | Life Saving Support for Thalassemia

About the Author:

Athira KP is a Post Graduate in Commerce. She is passionate about Music and Singing. Athira lives in Edappal, in Malappuram District of Kerala, now preparing for Kerala PSC.