The prestigious Anthony Nolan Supporter Awards are back for their third year to celebrate, recognise and thank the outstanding supporters who keep the pioneering blood cancer charity moving forward.
Sean has supported Anthony Nolan since joining the register in May 2011, after a national appeal from Ulverston teenager Alice Pyne.
When Sean went home after joining the register, he told his mum, “I know I’m going to donate to someone, I’ve just got this feeling.”
His gut feeling was right and Sean donated his stem cells in February 2012 after being found as a match for Johnny Pearson, a dad of two with leukaemia. Talking about the procedure – which is similar to giving blood – he said, “It was painless and that’s coming from someone with a fear of needles! I remember being amazed at how simple it was.”
In 2013, Johnny wrote to Sean about running the marathon for Anthony Nolan. “Anthony Nolan is now the official charity for the 2014 London Marathon… so, in a moment of sheer madness, I have signed up to run it. Maybe you could do it with me? No pressure!!” Sean soon replied, “I would be honoured to take part in the London Marathon with you! Suppose I best get training!”
Sean and Johnny ran the 26.2 miles side-by-side, and he incredibly raised over £8,000 for the charity. Undeterred by the physical challenge, Sean then ran again for Anthony Nolan the following year.
Since his donation, Sean has tirelessly championed the charity’s work, including organising hugely successful charity galas, giving speeches to young people about the work of Anthony Nolan, and backing the charity’s Destination Cure campaign.
Sean said: “I feel so honoured to be nominated for Donor Champion of the Year among such inspirational supporters of this incredible and lifesaving charity. The work of Anthony Nolan is very close to my heart so it means a great deal.”
Anthony Nolan uses its register to match potential stem cell donors to blood cancer patients in desperate need of a stem cell transplant. It also carries out research to make stem cell transplants more successful, and supports patients through their transplant journey.
The awards ceremony takes place on 17th November in the House of Commons and winners will be announced at the event. For more information, go to www.anthonynolan.org/awards
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