Free drives by NMDP

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Have you taken the Bone Marrow test yet?

If not, please do so as soon as possible by going here. How simple is this test? Here are some pictures to demonstrate the process is 2 simple steps.

Step 1: Fill up the form with your details.

Step 2: Collect your cheek cells by rubbing a Cotton Swab inside your Right upper cheek. Repeat this step with your right lower, left upper and left lower parts of your cheek.

The whole process will not take more than 10 minutes of your time and since very few South Asians are registered marrow donors, this test is free of cost to all South Asians. Also, Remember that this action of yours will not only benefit Vishal but many others who are in a similar situation.

Vishal is still in the hospital. His first chemotherapy which lasted for a week ended yesterday. His White blood cell count is close to 0 which means his immune system is very weak and he is prone to infections easily. Yesterday, He had a temperature of 101F. He is doing better today but the next 2 weeks are very crucial for him. His body will take 2 weeks to recover from the rigorous chemo regimen. He will have a bone marrow biopsy after a week and this would tell us if the chemo has worked and if the malignant cell count in his body is 0. Swati is with him all the time providing him with much needed support and comfort. Swati's father has come today from India to help her and Vishal.

How is our campaign coming along? First and foremost we would like to thank the incredible alumni of SPCE (Vishal and Swati's Ama mater). Few of them are doing everything possible to spread the message and promote this campaign. Mr. Sujeet Vaidya (an SPCE alumnus) is organizing a drive in Chicago on April 18th. All you folks in Chicago, We would be very grateful if you can be there and provide your support to this cause. Please do take the test if you haven't already taken. We will provide you with more details about this drive in the next post. Also, Ms.Renu and Dr. Akkaraju is organising a drive in Pennsylvania on April 18th at the Bharatiya Temple and Cultural Center in Chalfont, Pennsylvania. Please spread this message so that interested people can attend this drive. CapGemini Group, the company that Vishal works for is planning on conducting drives on its campus. We will let you know once we have all the details. Many of Swati's colleagues from Syntel have already taken the test and We are hopeful that Syntel's management will consider conducting drives on their various campus locations. Mr. Vishal Patil (Vishal's friend) has been working relentlessly to explore various avenues in India. He is in touch with SAMAR, DATRI, AIIMS and Tata Memorial Hospital. Mr. Raghu Rajagopal, Co-founder and CEO of DATRI has expressed a keen interest in Vishal and has promised us to conduct drives at various locations in India. We are all very thankful to all those people who have mailed/called us to provide support and in some cases valuable information. We would like to encourage you to continue doing so. In spite of so many organizations working for this cause, We need more people to take this test. Though South Asia is a highly populous region, we have very few registered donors from this gene pool. The onus is on us South Asians to improve the numbers in our favour.

April 6th happens to be a very special day for both Vishal and Swati. Explaining the significance of this day to us, Swati said:
One of the happiest memories that Vishal and I have are from this day. Vishal had called me asking me to meet him at a restaurant in Nariman Point, Bombay. I could sense some excitement in his voice. I could tell that he was up to something. we had been close friends for more than a year and I knew him very well. Finally when I met him, I noticed that he was behaving very differently. There was a twinkle in his eye and he was constantly fiddling as if he was in my company for the first time. This was the Vishal I had never seen. Then, it suddenly occurred to me that he probably was in love with me and wanted to confess. Once this thought occur ed to me, I could barely think and I was very nervous. How do I react? Should I reject his overtures ? You see, I was confused. I was never sure about the nature of my feelings for Vishal. Before I could think of a plausible reaction, Vishal professed his love to me and I was very overwhelmed. The moment he said those three magical words, it was as if some flood gates had opened up inside me and before I could realize, I was confessing my feelings to him. From that moment on, we have been inseparable. This was 6 years ago and we celebrate this occasion every year on this day. This is our Valentines day.
It is definitely unfair that this lovely couple has to go through this harrowing situation. There are many things that we can do to help them, one of them being - taking the test. Please go here to register yourself today. Please keep them in your prayers.

If you need information pertaining to this campaign or If you want to conduct a drive, please contact us at

Thank You!

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