Everton legend Gary Stevens is supporting a walk-up clinic at Goodison Park in October to help boost the number of lifesaving stem cell donors.
Stevens’ four-year-old son, Jack, remains in desperate need of a donor after suffering a cancer relapse following treatment for juvenile myelomonocytic leukaemia, a rare blood cancer that affects young children.
The Club is therefore opening its doors to a swabbing event on Saturday 9 October and Sunday 10 October, hosted by blood cancer charity DKMS, to find potential donors to add to the international register.
And former Blues defender Stevens is encouraging as many people as possible to turn up and be swabbed to help children like Jack.
“Imagine having the power to save someone’s life?" 💙— Everton (@Everton) September 30, 2021
On 9-10 October at Goodison Park, a walk-up clinic hosted by @DKMS_uk will aim to boost the number of lifesaving stem cell donors.
Could you be a match for Gary Stevens' son Jack? Or someone else in need around the world? 👇
Stevens, who now lives in Australia, said: “Imagine having the power to save someone’s life? If you like the idea of having that power, please get yourself down to Goodison and support the event.
“You can have a simple mouth swab, register within five minutes and you may find yourself saving somebody’s life on the other side of the world.
“It’s been a tough few years for the Stevens’ family, with my little boy having a rare form of leukaemia.
“The support we have had all the way through this difficult time has been very comforting, and it might be that it’s a little too late to save Jack.
“However, there are little kids all over the world who are desperately in need of a match for their stem cells, and I know Evertonians will get behind this event, so please give your time and you might find yourself a superhero!”
Fans aged between 17-55, and in good health, are invited to visit the People's Club Lounge, situated in the Park End at Goodison Park, on Saturday 9 October and Sunday 10 October, when a simple and painless series of swabs are taken from the inside of the mouth in a five-minute registration process.
Opening times for the drop-in clinic will be 10am-4pm on Saturday and 9am-3pm on Sunday.
Parking is available at the stadium on Saturday, with street parking only available on the Sunday due to the annual ‘If You Know Your History’ run.
Those participating in the run are also invited to head to Goodison after and register to become donors.
If contacted at a later date, fans who have the lifesaving potential of becoming a stem cell donor will be asked to give up half a day to travel to specialist centres in either Birmingham, Sheffield or London to become a donor. All costs would be covered and employers contacted by the charity to ensure time off work can be granted for a worthy cause.
DKMS spokesperson Reshna Radiven said: “Over the past year we have seen a significant fall in the number of people registering as potential stem cell donors, but as Jack’s story goes to show, the need for lifesaving donors is greater than ever.”
If you can’t make the event at Goodison Park, but still want to help, then you can still register online for your home swab kit at www.dkms.org.uk.
DKMS will also be fundraising at the event, and donations can be made at www.dkms.org/jack