Susan Choi, executive director of Los Angeles-based Asians for Miracle Marrow Matches (A3M), has issued the following statement:
“2021 marks a pivotal year at A3M, as we are celebrating 30 years of life-saving work, we are also preparing for the closing of A3M at the end of the year.
“In an effort to centralize all marrow donor registration activities, the Be the Match Registry will not be continuing their partnership with recruitment centers, such as A3M. All independent recruitment centers like A3M will be closing, with the intention that their work continue through the Be the Match organization.
“To address the need of finding marrow donors for patients of Asian and Pacific Islander (API) ancestry, Be the Match is in the process of creating an API program. We will be sharing more information on the API program in the near future.
“In the last 30 years, A3M is very proud to have added more than 330,000 donors to the marrow registry and more than 9,000 donors have matched with a patient and are ready to move forward to donate their marrow or blood stem cells. It is because of your generosity and support that this amazing accomplishment was possible.
“Please join us on Friday, Nov. 19, at 6 p.m. on YouTube for a look back at A3M’s 30 years of saving lives!” (Editor’s note: The video can still be viewed at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P3jYaQlGTTs)
A3M, a program of the Little Tokyo Service Center, was established to address the lack of Asian Americans on the national registry of possible marrow donors. A successful marrow transplant depends on a tissue match between donor and patient, and the best chance of finding a match is among donors with the same ethnic/racial background as the patient. Donor drives have been held at community events and stories of individual patients have been publicized through social media.
For more information, visit www.a3mhope.org.