The goal of Cheekswab is simple: to spread awareness of the need for minority bone marrow donors, and provide the means so that people who want to join the registry can do so. This includes providing relevant information via this website and physically conducting bone marrow drives, centered predominantly in the NYC area.
There is no definitive and quantitative measure of success when it comes to Cheekswab other than whether we’re genuinely doing all that we can to raise awareness. We believe it’s a very personal decision to join or not join the registry and qualitative assumptions about the decision either way are wrong. The miracle happens in the heart and mind of the individual registrant. One new person joining the registry and a thousand new people joining the registry are both miracles in our book, as they both represent very real opportunities to save lives. We will control what we can: whether or not people know the need exists. It’s not about numbers – it’s about conviction and sacrifice.
Cheekswab is an independent initiative that aligns with the goals of Be The Match, which coordinates the Be the Match registry. The intention is not to be a substitute for BTM, as that would be impossible – the size, scope, and responsibilities of BTM far surpass anything Cheekswab is capable of. But we believe that Cheekswab brings a unique voice and personal story to the need for donors. The instruction and kits used by Cheekswab are all provided by BTM and the completed registrations are all sent to BTM for processing into the Be the Match registry.
However, Cheekswab is not affiliated with BTM in any official capacity and is not a spokesperson.
While registering as 501c3 organization is something that Cheekswab is current evaluating we do not presently have that status. Cheekswab is simply an initiative to reach out to minority donors in the NYC area and provide an informative resource for anyone on the Internet.
Read more about financial donations here.
Cheekswab is not affiliated with SwabACheek.org, despite the similarity in name. To be honest, the names are completely coincidental. However, we do support everything they do, and encourage you to go to their website to see an established, life-saving organization in practice. They are an inspiration, as are all the other organizations listed on this page.
(Dan) Cheekswab is not an expressly Christian initiative or in any way an attempt to proselytize in the name of any religion. As cancer does not distinguish between race and religion, neither does Cheekswab or the need for bone marrow donors. Any mentions of Christianity or God by anyone on this site are not meant as an attack or challenge to the beliefs of others, but rather the honest expression of personal reflection and understanding. In the same way that it’s impossible for anyone to deny academic knowledge or personal experience when contextualizing thoughts and events, God and spirituality are an intrinsic part of how I understand my time and lessons from cancer.
Cheekswab drives are held at churches because they provide a means of addressing large numbers of minorities at once. We anticipate reaching out to other non-church events as well.
If there’s any part of this answer that causes you concern or you’d like to further discuss things, we encourage you to contact us.
A thousand times yes. If you’d like to register in person, host a drive at any scale, discuss a partnership opportunity or share an idea, please do not hesitate to contact us via the form provided on our website. In-person meetings can be arranged for those local to NYC.