People joining our register must:
We particularly need more young men to sign up. They produce more stem cells than women and are six times more likely to donate, but make up just 15% of our register. We also need more donors from black and minority ethnic backgrounds as we often struggle to find matches for people in these groups.
Gay men can join the bone marrow register. Everyone who joins our register goes through the same health and suitability checks – your sexuality doesn’t matter one bit.
Statistics show that young people are more likely to be chosen as donors in lifesaving transplants.
Of course, people over 30 can make excellent donors too, and that’s why we ask people to stay on our register until they’re 61.
But younger donors have fewer complications, such as heart disease and diabetes, that would prevent them donating. When every day counts for someone in desperate need of a lifesaving transplant, finding out a donor can’t proceed can waste precious time.
In addition, it costs £40 to add each donor to our register. As a charity with limited resources, we need to focus on recruiting the people most likely to be chosen as donors.
Find out more in our video
There are lots of other factors which mean, unfortunately, you may not be eligible to join our register.
These include if:
If you’re pregnant…
…you can join our register, but you won’t be able to donate until your baby is six months old (it will be longer if you're breastfeeding). Oh, and congratulations!
Not eligible to join?
We understand you must be disappointed. But don’t despair – there are lots of other ways you can get involved in our lifesaving work.