The Chinese immigrant organization SUCCESS has decided to increase the number of Chinese people registered to donate stem cells. The body has partnered with Canadian Blood Servces and the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network to encourage the process.

Stem cell donors and patients are matched according to the compatibility of inherited genetic markers called human leukocyte antigens, according to the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network, and a person’s best chance of finding a matching donor is within his or her own ethnic group.

Eighty-three per cent of Canada’s registered stem cell donors are Caucasian, while only 17 per cent come from ethnic backgrounds. Less than five per cent are of Asian descent.

The session, held at the Richmond Public Library, provided information to possible donors in Mandarin and Cantonese.