She said that she started holding bone marrow donor drives in the Dayton area in 2009, educating the general public of the need to be on the NMDP (National Marrow Donor Program) registry. However, it was her son, Centerville High School student Shravan Kalahasthy, who encouraged AAC Dayton to get involved and will be spearheading the bone marrow donation registration portion of AAC Dayton’s Health and Fitness Expo.
Following his mother’s lead, Kalahasthy has been conducting marrow donor drives for about 3 years now and says he has set a goal of registering 1,000 new donors by the end of the year. He says he already up to 500 registrations.
AAC Dayton member Don Hayashi says that he has witnessed firsthand how becoming a donor can make a difference.
“The information I was given about the National Bone Marrow Donor Program stated that in all probability I would not be called, because the chances of a match are approximately one out of 200,000 persons. That is why they need so many in the registry.”
Nonetheless, he said it gave him great satisfaction to know that he had done something which one day might help save someone’s life.
A few years later Hayashi found out that he was a match for a man with chronic leukemia and was called on to donate. He said that the procedure took a little over an hour and involved an overnight stay in the hospital.
“I experienced some minor soreness as if I had worked hard in the yard but no other ill-effects,” said Hayashi.
He said he following week the marrow donor representative phoned to tell him that she delivered the bone marrow to the recipient and met briefly with him. He was Korean-speaking and communicated his gratitude to Hayashi through a translator.
In addition to marrow donor registration, expo participants can take part in free cooking demonstrations, blood sugar and blood pressure screenings as well as sleep disorder, depression, and anxiety screenings, talks on workplace and school bullying, sleep medicine, drug addiction and recovery, depression, domestic violence, aging in America and much more.
In addition, the expo will be holding continuous participatory fitness sessions such as yoga, all day free guided meditation by highly trained instructors, Bollywood, Zumba, and Bhangra-Fit, Thai Chi, and a dance-a-thon.
To see a full schedule of event activities or to learn more about AAC Dayton you can go online at http://aacdayton.org/. For more information about the National Marrow Donor Program visit https://bethematch.org/.