SHS Student Wants You to Be a Match!
Be a Match! Be Part of the Cure!
Be The Match Registration Drive Scheduled for December 10
Matches help save lives and Selah High School junior, Taylor Aadland, knows that people are part of the cure. That is why she is spearheading a local Be The Match campaign in December in order to add individuals to the organization’s world-wide registry which can help in curing more than 75 life-threatening diseases. Be The Match is a global leader which cultivates a registry of potential peripheral blood stem cell and bone marrow donors for patients needing life-saving transplants because of diseases like blood cancer, leukemia, lymphoma and sickle cell anemia.
Through her project research, Aadland found that every three minutes, one person is diagnosed with blood cancer. Every 10 minutes, someone dies. After learning these statistics, Aadland, who is a member of the school’s HOSA Club of future health professionals, or Club Med as they call it, knew there had to be a way to help people. She wanted to be part of a solution and became motivated to help increase the number of potential donor matches on the Be the Match registry. After all, the more people on the registry, the more chances there are of matching patients with individuals for a potential cure.
Aadland and her Club Med team members will kick-off a local Be The Match registration drive during Selah High School’s annual holiday bazaar on Saturday, December 10, from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Selah High School. Individuals between the ages of 18-40 interested in joining the Be The Match Registry can visit Aadland at Selah’s Club Med booth and receive a kit to complete a simple cheek swabbing process where DNA is collected and then sent to Be the Match laboratories where the sample is processed and analyzed genetically. From there, an individual’s healthy tissue results are added to a global registry until a possible patient match is found which can help in curing a multitude of devastating diseases. If individuals can’t attend the school’s December 10 event and want to participate, Aadland has scheduled other registry events throughout the winter, as well as created an online sign-up opportunity where testing kits can be delivered to homes. See more about Taylor Aadland's Be The Match Project here.
Aadland says that the registration drive is important because even with a registry of millions of people, many ailing p
atients cannot find a donor match for their disease. Aadland says her campaign is an attempt to increase the diversity of the registry so more matches can be made.
“I thought this would be a good project to hold in the Selah community,” said Aadland. “The community is very tight and is always helping others. The diversity of the Valley is huge and participation could help create a more diverse Be The Match registry which could mean more lives saved.”
For those who are unsure of the commitment, Aadland says the process is easy and when added to the registry, there is not an immediate obligation to become a donor. However, being added to the registry is the first step in providing hope and a potential cure for someone. Also, Aadland adds there are other ways to participate in the Be The Match cause. For individuals who do not want to be added to the registry or don’t fall within the specific age range, but still want to provide support, tax- deductible donations will be accepted and used to help patients with the uninsured costs of transplants, as well as assist in furthering stem cell research.
For all her work in leading a match movement, Aadland will also represent Selah HOSA later this spring when she competes with her Be The Match project at the Health Occupations Students of America competition.
In her mind, Aadland has a goal of how many individuals she would like to see participate in the Be The Match drive and added to the registry. After all, each individual who participates is one more person who might be a potential match for a patient. However, instead of numbers, Aadland is focusing on lives. The lives that can be saved when a match is found and people are cured.
For more information, or to inquire about participating, please email Selah High School teachers:
Heather Gamache at email@example.com
Courtney Peart at firstname.lastname@example.org