By Tim Saunders on
Singer Rihanna is to help a sick young girl find a bone marrow donor.
Jasmina Anna Anema is a five year old girl from New York City who suffers from Leukaemia – the often fatal cancer of the blood. Without a donor, Jasmina will die.
“When I saw the video of Jasmina it broke my heart,” Rihanna told PEOPLE. "It is so unfair that for a black patient it’s so much harder to find a bone marrow match. Jasmina has acute leukemia and she needs a bone marrow transplant to live.
“Leukemia is the most common disease children in the U.S. die of and we need to change that. I urge everyone to sign up as a bone marrow donor with DKMS. If we have more donors, we can save more children like Jasmina."
Finding a bone marrow match for African-Americans is extremely difficult, as they are underrepresented on the donor registry. DKMS and Rihanna are urging more African-Americans to step up and donate to save lives.
“Finding a match is our only answer,” said Thea Amena, Jasmina’s mother. “We have to. And we want to bring awareness to this – not just for Jasmina, but for everyone with leukemia. I hope people come forward to help.”
This is not the first time Rihanna has helped find a bone marrow donor. Last February she helped find a donor to save the life of a New York mother, and she also performed at the DKMS gala fundraiser.
“I think DKMS is an incredible charity because you can really see the results,” said the singer.
For more information on how to become a donor, visit the DKMS website.
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