On 27th and 28th May 2018, Shree Swaminarayan Mandir Kingsbury achieved a fantastic feat in registering over 250 new stem cell donors with the charity, DKMS - during the 76th manifestation day celebrations of Acharya Swamishree Maharaj.
DKMS is an international non-profit advocacy group that works to raise awareness of the need for donors of stem cells, which which are in acute need for treatment of blood cancers. Every 20 minutes someone in the UK is diagnosed with a blood cancer such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma.
The heartbreaking story of Kaiya, a 5 year old unicorn-loving gymnast reached the Mandir community. Kaiya was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of leukaemia and had endured five weeks of chemotherapy, blood transfusions, high dose steroids, lumbar punctures and many more invasive and toxic interventions to help treat his condition. However, she needed a stem cell donor - but these are much rarer within Asian communities.
So we mobilised as a Mandir to help give her, and other sufferers, a fighting chance. As Acharya Swamishree Maharaj has taught us, “It is through giving of life that all of our lives are saved.” And what better way to celebrate His 76 years than by helping Kaiya.
Over 250 people gave swabs, with Mandir volunteers guiding them through the process and DKMS answering any questions the registrants had. Thank you to all who helped achieve this remarkable result!