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"Spit kits" to be handed out as search for a bone marrow donor for Joey continues

Joey Ziadi needs a bone marrow donor. Credit: ITV News Anglia.

A thousand "spit kits" are set to be handed out in Northamptonshire this weekend as a family continues its bid to find a bone marrow donor for a seriously-ill toddler.

Joey Ziadi, from Northampton, was diagnosed in February with Diamond-Blackfan anaemia (DBA), a blood condition that affects only 800 people in the world.

So far a matching bone marrow donor is yet to be found - but a campaign being run by his family and the Anthony Nolan stem cell register has seen a boost in the number of people signing up as a potential donor since Joey's plight first hit the media.

On Saturday, mum Kaisha Morris, 35, is hoping to encourage a further 1,000 people to join the register at Northampton Balloon Festival, at Billing Aquadrome, by running a marquee at between 9am and 6pm.

She said most people did not realise how simply the process of donating was.

Family campaigns for organ and stem cell donors

A family is campaigning to encourage more people to sign up, to the bone marrow and stem cell register. Jaskomal Sher-Gill from Bedfordshire was given new hope of fighting her blood cancer, after discovering her brother was a match for stem cell donation.

But, despite a successful transplant, Jaskomal died at the age of 23, her immune system too low to fight off a chest infection. Well, her family have launched a foundation in her memory, to give others with lymphoma a better chance of survival.

And - as Olivia Paterson reports - there's a particular need to find donors from ethnic minority backgrounds.