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Holidays converge on Sickle Cell Day

OW Staff Writer | 6/15/2011, 5 p.m.

In commemoration of World Sickle Cell Day, the African American Blood Drive and Bone Marrow Registry for Sickle Cell Disease Awareness (African Americans for Sickle Cell Disease Awareness, or AA4SCDA) is holding an event at the Vermont Square United Methodist Church on Sunday.

The celebration will include Father's Day speakers on the subject of "A Father's Love: Journey From Sickle Cell to Marrow Transplant for My Child" and shared perspectives on family members diagnosed with sickle cell.

There will also be a moment of silence for hope and in remembrance of loved ones who have passed away from the disease, followed by a free Father's Day luncheon (100 lunches) donated by the church.

The event will also feature a "Winter Holiday in June" toy giveaway, donated by the KIS Foundation for Children and Young Adults Diagnosed with Sickle Cell. Most of the youth in the foundation were sick or in the hospital and unable to participate in the holiday event in December, so this latest effort is an attempt to make up for their absence. The giveaway will also feature other activities such as arts and crafts, cooking demonstrations, special guests, music, prizes, and vendors. One hope of the event is the uniting the sickle cell community.

Since the church is providing the food and most drinks, the AA4SCDA only has to provide paper and plastic goods, and decorations for the Winter Wonderland toy giveaway.

The wish list includes: (200) large and small sturdy plates, (200) bottles of drinking water, (200) plastic forks, knives and spoons, table covers and skirts (red and white Juneteenth colors), (200) plastic or paper 6-oz. cups, bathroom tissue and paper towels for the restrooms, volunteers trained and untrained and monetary donations in any amount.

Those desiring to participate or contribute are asked to contact Nita Thompson, chair of African American Blood Drive and Bone Marrow Registry for Sickle Cell Disease Awareness at (323) 750-1087.

For those interested in attending, the church is located at 4410 S. Budlong Ave. in Los Angeles.

"We will keep our website http://aablooddriveandmarrowregistry4sicklecellawareness.webs.com updated as items are received," said Thompson.