My name is Siphosethu and I recently did something pretty cool!

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My name is Siphosethu and I recently did something pretty cool: I donated my blood stem cells to a blood cancer patient!

My name is Siphosethu and I recently did something pretty cool: I donated my blood stem cells to a blood cancer patient!

The first step in this life-affirming mission was attending an educational and awareness workshop, which opened my eyes to the vital need for donors. Now I am asking you to take the same life-saving step and register with DKMS Africa to become a blood stem cell donor.

About me

I am a 21-year-old University of Cape Town student, pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree with majoring in Film & Media and African Studies. I'm hoping that what I'm learning will assist my community by exposing them to something they haven't seen before. I'm sure there are many children who would want to be on television but lack the necessary knowledge and tools.

How I felt when I got the call that I was a potential matching donor

To be honest, I didn’t think I would actually get the call so I felt a little overwhelmed, but excited that I could help save someone’s life. Life is precious so this was a pivotal moment for me. When the moment to do something this life-changing presents itself, you have to seize it!

My fears about donating my blood stem cells

The day of the stem cell collection only took a few hours of my day. The whole process felt surreal but with the support of my family, the help of the nurse, and Samantha Anthony from DKMS, I felt taken care of and confident in myself. I didn’t experience any negative side effects after the donation.

If you’re considering registering

Registering to be a donor was very easy and knowing I got to save someone’s life is something I will be proud of for the rest of my life. Whenever I was scared, I asked myself, "What if it were one of your family members in need of help?” and that kept me going because I would hope someone else would be willing to do what they can to save them.


A South African is diagnosed with blood cancer or a blood disorder every 72 minutes.

Patients of African descent only have a 30% chance of finding a matching blood stem cell donor while white patients have a 79% chance. This is because of the ethnic underrepresentation on the global stem cell registry. We can change this by getting more people registered as blood stem cell donors.

Matches are not based on blood type but rather on your HLA characteristic (DNA). This means that a blood cancer patient’s match is most likely to come from someone in the same ethnic group which is why representation matters.

Becoming a donor starts by registering on the DKMS Africa website. A swab kit will be couriered to you and collected for free. Once your swab has been typed in their lab, you will be listed as an active donor on the global stem cell registry.

If you are found to be a match, their medical team will contact you directly via your listed contact number. The chances of being a match are 1 in 100 000 and you’ll only ever donate up to two times for the same patient.

The donation is done via the Peripheral Stem Cell Method which means there’s no surgery involved and it’s similar to donating blood or platelets.

All costs related to the donation process are taken care of by DKMS Africa. You will not be asked to pay for anything.

DKMS Contact Person

Donor Recruitment Team

Are you ready to become a potential lifesaver? Join the registry now
There are many ways to get involved and support our mission.
You could be raising awareness, join the registry, hosting your own event, taking on a fundraising challenge, or anything in between.