Readers donate to help Joe

THANK you so much. That is the message from the family of 15-year-old Joe Males to everyone who has registered to become a bone marrow donor. The National Blood Service has seen an increase in people attending blood donor sessions in Comet country since

THANK you so much. That is the message from the family of 15-year-old Joe Males to everyone who has registered to become a bone marrow donor.

The National Blood Service has seen an increase in people attending blood donor sessions in Comet country since The Comet publicised the plight of Joe, from Old Hale Way in Hitchin.

But the search continues to find him a suitable match after he was diagnosed with leukaemia in January.

He has had chemotherapy but needs a bone marrow transplant after his was damaged by the treatment. Joe's two sisters are not a close enough match and the search continues for a volunteer donor.


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Joe's cousin Laura Garbas told The Comet: "There has been a serious influx of people going to give blood and get registered as donors so on behalf of the family I'd like to express sincerest thanks to everyone who has taken time out of their lives to try and help Joe.

"It means so much to us that people who don't know him are trying their hardest to help us."

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Rebecca Kalozois, from National Blood Service said: "Joining the British Bone Marrow Registry (BBMR) is easy. You must be a blood donor and aged between 18 and 44. Just let staff at the donor session know when you arrive and they will take another small sample of blood for tissue typing. By joining the register you could give the gift of life to someone who really needs it."

To find out where your nearest session is, call the National Donor Helpline on 0845 7 711711 or log onto www.blood.co.uk

Joe's father, David Males, is encouraging readers to go along to an upcoming blood donor session in the area to give blood and join the BBMR.

Sessions taking place soon are:

* Tuesday, April 4 at Hitchin Town Hall. Times are: 9.15am-12.30pm and 2pm-4.30pm.

* Monday, April 17 at Stevenage Arts and Leisure Centre, Ellen Terry Room, Lytton Way. Times are 9.15am-12.30pm and 2pm-4.15pm.

* Friday, April 21 at Hitchin Town Hall from 12.15pm-3.30pm and 5pm-7.30pm.

* A FUNDRAISING ball has been organised to raise money for Joe. It will be held at the Thistle (Blakemore) Hotel in Little Wymondley on Saturday, May 13.

A raffle and auction are being held with prizes such as a week's accommodation in a Florida villa up for grabs.

Tickets are £30 and the price includes a three-course meal and dancing until 1.30am.

For tickets call 01462 621494.

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