Search

Ilford family to campaign for more bone marrow donors after 11-year-old daughter loses cancer fight

11:31 15 November 2012

Brave Fiza Bashir with her mum, Riffat

Brave Fiza Bashir with her mum, Riffat

Archant

“I was glad she was no longer in pain, but I just wanted to cuddle my little girl,” said the mum of an 11-year-old, who is determined to get more bone marrow donors registered from ethnic minority groups after the death of her daughter.

Donor facts

There are currently 1600 people in the UK who desperately need a lifesaving bone marrow transplant.

Only 50 per cent of these patients will be able to find a match from registered donors.

To register as a donor visit www.anthonynolan.org/spit.

Family and friends worked tirelessly to find a donor for Fiza Bashir, of St George’s Road, Ilford, after she was diagnosed with T-cell lymphoma, a type of blood cancer, in September last year.

Despite a hundred donors coming forward after a recruitment event held at Fiza’s school, Gilbert Colvin Primary, in Stafford Avenue, Clayhall and an appeal in the Recorder, a match was not found and she died in August.

Her mum, Riffit, said: “I was so glad she was no longer in pain, but I just wanted to hold and cuddle my little girl. She was very weak towards the end and could no longer speak, but you could see the happiness in her eyes when the family was around her.”

They faced the agonising experience of waiting for test results to see if a donor match had been found for Fiza and made the decision to go forward with a haplo transplant (a half-match) from a family member, to try and buy her some more time.

Patients from black and ethnic minority backgrounds (BME) have a 40 per cent chance of finding a matching donor, compared to 90 per cent for white northern European patients.

Riffit, who also has a son and daughter, said: “Fiza taught me that you must just keep living; she was a fighter.

“I still feel like my right arm is missing.

“My family and I want to keep going especially as there are children out there who still need donors.

“We are looking into how we can raise awareness of the lack of donors from Caribbean and Asian backgrounds.”

A spokesman from the Anthony Nolan Trust, who supported Fiza’s appeal, said: “We are working hard to research ways to help patients from BME backgrounds, particularly the Asian-Indian population.”

0 comments

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 15:00
Cllr Gwyneth Deakins

Work has started on a new pedestrian crossing outside a school following a long-fought campaign by parents.

Yesterday, 12:00
The Temple, Wanstead Park. Picture: Friends of Wanstead Parklands

The latest news from Redbridge’s clubs and societies.

Yesterday, 09:00
Sir Winston Churchill. Picture: PA

Sir Winston Churchill, who died on January 24, 1965, is famed for his role as war prime minister, but his story is also ingrained in Redbridge’s history. Beth Wyatt delves into his relationship with Wanstead and Woodford

Fri, 17:24
Aldersbrook head Misbah Mann, back-left, governor Lady Tracey Adebowale-Jones, back-right-centre, and teacher Dean Gibson, back-right, with pupils celebrating their ofsted report success

A school has proven it’s top of the class after it was rated “outstanding” in its latest Ofsted inspection.

Most read news

It’s easy to lose sight of how beautiful London is when you’re crammed into a commuter train. Let these flying Instagram users take you on a bird’s eye tour of London.

People have pretty good memories when it comes to the outstanding performance of a tub of lard on HIGNFY.

The UN ambassador unveiled IMPACT10X10X10, a new initiative to end gender inequality as part of the HeForShe campaign.

David Cameron and Tony Blair are among those paying tribute.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Ilford Recorder e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24
Our trusted business finder