A BRAVE teenager has started a campaign asking people to help save not only her own life, but the lives of others.
She was overwhelmed by the response from kind-hearted youngsters who signed up to help her and others like her.
Sophie Bosley and her family, from Midhurst, are campaigning for people to join the Anthony Nolan register after 16-year-old Sophie, who suffers from a rare form of leukaemia, was told her only chance of a cure was a bone marrow transplant.
They hosted a recruitment drive at Chichester College on January 22, asking 16 to 30-year-olds to register as donors.
Sophie was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukaemia – a rare blood cancer – when she was 14.
She is being treated in the paediatric oncology centre at Southampton’s St Mary’s Hospital and has now been referred to the Royal Marsden Hospital, in London.
With no stem cell matches in her family, she has turned to strangers for help.
Sophie said: “I had a fairly busy day. A camera crew came to my home in the morning to interview me, then I had an exam before coming here to meet and thank everyone.
“All you have to do is fill in a form with your details and then someone will sit down and talk you through the process. After that, a sample of your saliva is taken and sent off to be tested, before you are added to the register.
“It’s really easy and pretty much anyone – especially young people – can do it.”
Lynsey Dickson is regional development manager at the Anthony Nolan charity. “We would like to encourage students to sign up to the stem cell register and we were particularly inspired by Sophie’s appeal,” she said.
“It was great that the college allowed us to come along – they have been really supportive.
“The simple process requires students to fill in a form then give a sample of saliva. It can really improve our chance of finding a match for those that need it, and we have had nearly 100 students come along today, which is a great result.”