THOUSANDS of pounds of Government cash could be put into pilot schemes for education about bone marrow donation in schools – and Huddersfield will be one of the ground-breaking areas.
The Government is expected to confirm next week whether it will pump money into the pilots which are part of journalist Adrian Sudbury’s campaign to raise awareness about bone marrow donation.
The scheme could start as early as next month, and would also include Nottinghamshire where Adrian was born.
The pilot schemes would be a joint venture between the Anthony Nolan Trust, which runs one of the UK’s two bone marrow registers, the Department of Health and the Department of Education.
The initial cost could be £80,0000 – with the potential for the schemes to cost £500,000 once fully under way.
The proposal for the schemes was put forward by the Anthony Nolan Trust to Ed Balls, secretary of state for children, schools and families, and his second-in-command, Beverley Hughes, at a meeting in London yesterday.
Adrian’s father, Keith Sudbury, was also at the meeting, along with Colne Valley MP Kali Mountford, who has been a key supporter in Adrian’s campaign.
She said nothing was guaranteed, but was hoping for a positive outcome next week.
“We had an extremely positive response,’’ said Ms Mountford. “They have gone away now to see if it’s possible to fund the idea.
“They said they would give us an answer by the end of the week, which is very fast.
“The level of interest shown was great. Ed Balls had a heavy schedule that day and he took time out for the meeting, which we were very impressed with.”
Teaching resources about the blood, bone marrow and organ donation – entitled Give And Let Live – were amended by the Government and NHS Blood and UK Transplant to suit 17 and 18-year-olds.
Health secretary Alan Johnson and Mr Balls also wrote to all UK schools and colleges in September, encouraging them to use the resources.