It was an absolute honour to meet Ava Stark and her family as they were awarded the John Petchy Hero of the Year award at Westminster last night.
The award was given by the Anthony Nolan Trust in recognition of four-year-old Ava and her entire family, who have become huge advocates for the Trust after Ava was diagnosed with Inherited Bone Marrow Failure in 2016.
Her mum, Marie, campaigned tirelessly to highlight the importance of people signing up to the stem cell donor regis…ter in the hope that would one day Ava would ‘find her hero’.
Ava’s campaign – which was picked up by the Daily Record – resulted in around 20,000 people coming forward to join the Anthony Nolan register as potential stem cell donors.
Many more registered with blood cancer charity DKMS.
Brave Ava, who lives in Lochgelly, underwent a bone marrow transplant in November last year, which saved her life.
Moreover, by sharing her story, Ava’s family have inspired many to sign up to the Anthony Nolan register to give more patients hope for a second chance of life.
Henny Braund, Anthony Nolan chief executive, said: “Ava’s story resonated with a huge number of people, not only in the UK, but around the world.
“While many people support Anthony Nolan, enabling us to carry out our lifesaving work, Ava and her family have gone above and beyond in raising awareness for our cause and helping to spread the word.”