Five thousand people turn out on a rainy day to try and find a stem cell match for little Oscar

Sometimes it takes something truly devastating to bring a community together. When five year old Oscar Saxelby-Lee was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer back in December he needed  a stem cell transplant. His school, in Worcester, organised an event trying to find a donor that would be able to help with Oscar’s treatment. Usually a close family member is suitable but unfortunately in Oscar’s case this wasn’t the case. The event was held in early March on what was a rainy day and despite the horrible weather over 5000 people turned up to be tested.

The family are optimistic that a match can be found and that the treatment will be successful. When you hear a story like this it really does show that a community can pull together and working as team hopefully great things can happen.

The family have launched a crowd funding page for Oscar and on this page the family are keeping everyone up to date with progress.

Banana Crumble would like to wish Oscar and his family all the very best and keep everything crossed that a match is found and that he can have his transplant and treatment and he will make a full and speedy recovery.

When we write articles sometimes due to scheduling a few weeks go by so before we published this we wanted to have an update. We were so pleased to see a report saying that after the appeal three stem cell matches have been found and that the family are waiting on further tests to see which of the three is the best match and then to identify the donor. Oscar will need four days of chemotherapy to prepare his body before the transplant and his family are hoping that this will be done before the end of April. His mother was said to say that “the news about the potential donor was a million times better than winning the lottery”.

This really is great news and we hope that the treatment goes well and that Oscar will make a full and speedy recovery. Double good news – a community working together and a potential donor found. Perfect!!

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Banana Chat – meet Charles Michael Duke

When we receive our interviews and start to collate them ready for production we sometimes get an interview that actually blows your mind and this one is certainly one of those. In December 2017 a charity single was released raising funds and awareness of CF. We ran a feature on it. To read that article click here. One of those involved was Charles Michael Duke. I contacted him at the time and asked for an interview. He responded to say he would and we have communicated throughout the year. Never in all of the times we messaged did he even mention his lung transplant and when you read his answers he is just the most modest person you can imagine. He literally just says he would like to plug BBC’s “This is my Song” absolutely no reason why!! This man is an absolute legend, one who was so humble when he received his new lungs and one that has gone on to inspire so many people. We at Banana Crumble truly hope that you can achieve all your hopes and dreams. He has featured on ITV’s Loose Women, BBC News and radio programmes to name but a few. He is also the face of our Charity page here at Banana Crumble.

My name is Charles Michael Duke and I have spent the past 5 years of my life raising awareness about organ donation and Cystic Fibrosis, through TV appearances, Youtube videos, and news articles. I was diagnosed with CF when I was born, and had a double lung transplant in May 2018. After receiving my transplant I’m getting back to what I love – Performing, and will be returning to the stage in Christchurch, Dorset, in a production of Cinderella (January 2019) that I wrote with a friend of mine whilst I was waiting for my transplant.

To visit my Facebook please click here.
To visit my Instagram please click here.
To visit my Twitter please click here.

What is your favourite joke?
Oh goodness… I like lots of jokes, but at the moment its probably, what did the cheese say to itself in the mirror? Halloumi…  

What makes you smile?
Seeing other people smile.

What is your favourite good news story?
When someone gets their transplant!  

What inspires you?
Other people with Cystic Fibrosis. They’re all amazing, achieving amazing things! 

If you could change one thing in the world what would it be?
Donald Trump.

 If you could have one superpower what would you choose and why?
To teleport, because I always feel like I could do more if I didn’t have to spend so much traveling to places! 

What is your favourite food?
Steak and chips (which I can’t have cooked rare after my transplant, the diet is like being pregnant.) So I don’t really have it now   

What is your favourite drink?
Coca Cola, I live off it! But don’t tell my dietitian or diabetes nurse… 

If you are going on holiday what luxury item would you take from home?
My Phone. So I could take pictures to remember the memories. Listen to music, and keep in contact with all the people I love! 

If you could make one law, what would it be and why?
That on the first Thursday of every month, it’s take your dog to work day. Because the world is a better place with more dogs.

Give us a random piece of information about you that people wouldn’t know?
I have three sisters and no brothers. One of them is a twin, she’s younger than me though.

What is your favourite phrase or saying?
‘You know what I mean’ or, ‘I’m not going to lie to you’ 

What cause, project or event would you like to promote?
Well, it would probably need to be Organ donation, Panto, and the BBC series  ‘This Is My Song

Who is your favourite music artist?
Michael Buble, Hugh Jackman, Lin-Manuel Miranda, THERE’S LOADS!

Who is the person that you feel has shaped your life most?
My Mum and Dad.

PJ’s or Not?

Hot or cold? Hot

Cat or dog? Dog (But I have a cat!)

Blue or pink? Pink! (Organ Donation Colour)

Tea or coffee? Neither! Coca Cola, Or honey and Lemon  

Glass half-empty or glass half-full? Half full! 

Pyjamas or not? Depends… most of the time not 🙂

Night out or night in? night in! 

Pizza or pasta? Pizza

Biscuits or cake? Biscuits 

Wine or beer? Neither. LAMBRINI! 

Football or rugby? Football

Cinema or theatre? THEATRE! 

Gym or TV? TV (But I should probably say Gym…)

Naughty or nice? Nice

Silver or gold? Gold

Tent or hotel? Tent! 

Bath or shower? Bath!

Starter or pudding? Starter

Sheets or duvet? Duvet

Love Island or Game of Thrones? GoT!

Finally, apple or banana? Apple

Have you signed up to Banana Crumble yet?

Sign up today for FREE for your chance to win £25, £50 and £100 each and every week. Sign up takes 2 minutes. All unclaimed prizes get donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Trust. By signing up, reading, sharing and liking our articles, you are helping us raise money for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust! Thank you!