"How one day of your life can give someone an entire lifetime"

A Sheffield man will walk 160 miles across the country in a bid to raise £1,000 for the Anthony Nolan charity.

Tuesday, 11th June 2019, 7:54 am
Updated Thursday, 13th June 2019, 11:44 am
Mike Smith prepares for his walking challenge

Mike Smith decided to take on the walking challenge after losing his own dad to a rare form of cancer in 2007.

Mike, of Malin Bridge, said: “After dad died, I learned more about the work that Anthony Nolan does, and became determined to do something good in his memory, outside of raising funds.”

Anthony Nolan matches individuals willing to donate their blood stem cells or bone marrow to people who desperately need lifesaving transplants. Mike registered his DNA with the charity, and in 2015 was contacted when it was revealed he was a match with a little girl.

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“All I was told was that she was nine-years-old and needed a stem cell transplant, and that I could help.”

Mike spent five-and-a-half hours hooked up to a machine that cycled out his blood, removing the precious stem cells.

“It was just like donating blood,” said the 35-year-old.

“Afterwards I felt normal, no side effects. It’s incredible that one day of your time can give somebody an entire lifetime.”

And now, Mike wants to raise £1,000 to help the charity get more people on their register.

“It’s expensive to get people on the register,” Mike explained.

“Previously it's cost £40 per person, though now the charity has made the switch to swabs, £900 can buy 5,000 swabs, meaning as many as 5,000 new names on the register; that’s my aim.”

Mike will set off on his four-day walk, from Seeffield to the Anthony Nolan HQ in London, in September, walking 35-40 miles a day.

Visit ‘sheffield2london’ on the JustGiving site to support Mike in his challenge.