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Be the Lifeline for South African Toddlers Battle Against Blood Cancer

South African toddler Maddy has been diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL) and is now in need of a blood stem cell donor. Diagnosed at the tender age of three months old, this tiny warrior has been fighting for her new beginning since November 2021.

Blood cancer charity DKMS is appealing to South Africans based in the UK to help Maddy win the battle against blood cancer by registering as a stem cell donor at

Maddy’s parents, Alessandra and Norman, first noticed something was wrong when their daughter developed a distended tummy. They consulted a doctor and were referred to the Wits Donald Gordon Medical Centre in Johannesburg for further tests, and two days later they received the devastating diagnosis. Chemotherapy initially worked and Maddy was declared cancer-free after one month of treatment. She remained cancer-free for a year and a half, but she, unfortunately, relapsed in June 2023. This time, the cancer cells were present in her spinal fluid affecting her to the point where she couldn’t walk or talk. After one month of chemo, Maddy is currently cancer-free and back to being strong and independent. Finding a stem cell donor and reaching a transplant is Maddy’s best chance of living out a full and happy life.

“It breaks my heart watching her go through all these treatments but I know she has to, to get her new beginning,” shares Maddy’s hopeful mother Alessandra.  

You could help Maddy, and other blood cancer patients like her, by registering to become a stem cell donor at

• Every year, more than 7,300 people are diagnosed with blood cancer in South Africa.
• DKMS currently has 11,5 million registered donors globally, including more than 950,000 in the UK and more than 50,000 in South Africa.
• Every new registered donor has the potential to give a blood cancer patient a second chance of life.

About DKMS:
DKMS is one of the most significant non-profit organisations in the world dedicated to the fight against blood cancer.  Founded in Germany in 1991 by Dr Peter Harf, DKMS and the organisation’s over 1,000 employees have since relentlessly pursued the aim of giving as many patients as possible a second chance at life. With 11.5 million registered donors, DKMS has succeeded in doing these 105,000 times to date by providing blood stem cell donations to those in need. This accomplishment has led to DKMS becoming the global leader in the facilitation of unrelated blood stem cell transplants. The organisation has offices in Germany, the US, Poland, the UK, Chile, and South Africa. In India, DKMS has founded the joint venture DKMS-BMST together with the Bangalore Medical Services Trust. International expansion and collaboration are key to helping patients worldwide because like the organisation itself, blood cancer knows no borders.  DKMS is also heavily involved in the fields of medicine and science, with its own research unit focused on continually improving the survival and recovery rate of patients.

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