Update x: Join the Internet Loves Amit Facebook group and follow #4amit to stay tuned for updates!
Update: The best thing you can do is get anyone you know of South Asian descent to take a very simple, free, painless test and spread the word to their friends. You can take the test at our party on October 14th or register online to receive a kit! There is a cost associated with each test, but the person taking the test is not required to pay it. We are, however, trying to raise as much money as we can to support the test costs. Send any dollar amount to email@example.com on Paypal to help!
Update #2: In the comments below, Ziv points out the following things:
(1) Registering and getting the swab kit, is free.
(2) The transplant is not done through a needle in the back, in most cases. It’s done via a blood-transfusion-like machine, and is totally painless.
I’m not an expert at any of this, though I am learning fast! Best bet if you have any questions is to check the official sources, like marrow.org.
Update #3: By “South Asian” I am told that means (India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, or Sri Lanka).
Update #4: A page that is chock full of resources and details can be found here: http://u.nwc.co/4amitdoc
Yesterday, we lost one of the great luminaries of our time to cancer.
Today, we have an opportunity to help others in their fight. In particular, one of the most special people I know: Amit Gupta.
Amit is the founder of the endlessly wonderful DIY photography site Photojojo. He’s the cofounder of Jelly, a casual coworking community which started in New York in 2006 and spread to over 60 cities worldwide, acting as the starting point for countless coworking communities. The original Jelly in New York was my first coworking experience, and my firsthand inspiration to dedicate myself to what would become New Work City.
Jelly was formed at House 2.0, a place Amit co-founded after college as a den of geeky happiness. House 2.0 was a big beautiful loft space in midtown, where creative art projects and the markered scrawlings of visitors adorned the walls everywhere, and where something as crazy as Jelly could live. I moved into House 2.0 when Amit moved out in 2007; it was my first home in New York City since I was a baby.
Amit has changed the world with his actions and through the people he has inspired. Anyone who knows him will tell you that he is one of the most special people they know, and they are right. Rarely will you find an individual with such a combination of warmth, charm, and tenacity.
Amit has leukemia. He was diagnosed only two weeks ago, but already so much has happened. He’s undergoing chemotherapy now at Connecticut’s Smilow Cancer Center in Yale-New Haven Hospital, near his family.
To aid him in his fight, Amit is going to need a bone marrow transfusion. Unlike blood transfusions, finding a genetic match for bone marrow that his body will accept is no easy task. The national bone marrow registry has 9.5 million records on file, yet the chances of someone from South Asian descent of finding a match are only 1 in 20,000.
This is where we come in. We’re going to destroy those odds.
How? By finding and registering as many people of South Asian descent as we possibly can.
Tests are easy– a simple swab of the cheek. If you are determined to be a match, you could literally save the life or Amit or someone else!
That’s why, starting now, we are encouraging anyone, but particularly those of South Asian descent, between the ages of 18 to 60 to take a test to see if you’re a match.
You can register online for your test, or, if you’re in New York, you can join us Friday, October 14th, for a special party we are throwing to rally support.
We’ll have test kits on hand at the party, as well as music, booze, and maybe even a photo booth. It will, for the first time, combine a House 2.0-style party with a New Work City-style party, and if you’ve ever been to either, you know they are always something special.
Even if you can’t attend or get tested, you can still help.
While you are not required to pay to be tested, the bone marrow tests do cost money. We want to do our part to pay for the tests we will be sending in, so you can donate using the below registration form to help! Donate whatever you can do firstname.lastname@example.org – the money will go to the cost of the tests.
You can also help by reaching out to any South Asian friends you know and asking them to spread the word to their friends and relatives.
Minorities are severely underrepresented in the bone marrow registry, so getting more people to register could help save many other lives as well.
Despite all of his challenges, Amit has maintained an unstoppable attitude of positivity and energy. Let’s do the same and help him defeat this thing, so he can continue to inspire us with his awesomeness for many years to come.
Direct link to the party: http://brownbones.eventbrite.com
Help spread the word on Facebook: http://facebook.com/event.php?eid=268285533204616