An Aberdeen man who saved a life by donating his stem cells has urged others to do the same.
Paul Flecher-Herd, from Kingswells, signed up to the Anthony Nolan register in memory of his friend Cammy Smith, who passed away from leukaemia in 2014, aged just 26.
This year, Paul found he was a match with someone battling the same condition, and donated his cells during a procedure in London.
He has since heard from the recipient, thanking him for saving his life.
Now Paul, 28, has appealed for more people to join the register.
He said: “I think having that first-hand experience makes it easier for people to come to me and ask what it’s like. A lot of people have said they wouldn’t have thought of doing it because they either didn’t know what it was for or because they were scared of the procedure.
“But once I explained it to them, and how it can impact on the recipient’s life, they soon changed their mind.
“It’s four hours. Although there is medical prep before it, time like that is nothing if you get the result you could possibly get. You could save someone’s life, and if that’s the case, it doesn’t matter how long it takes.”
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Paul wants to put people’s minds at ease if they have any concerns over the procedure and he said the results of donating cells make it worthwhile.
He said: “I would tell anyone to just go for it. You could save someone’s life and that’s something you can’t beat.
“It may sound daunting but once you realise what the outcome may be you should definitely go for it and pass on the message to anyone.
“It has potentially amazing consequences at the end of it. You could give someone a second chance at life.”
This year Paul also launched a petition aimed at bringing in laws requiring employers to give staff time off to donate.
And although it was cancelled by the government as a result of dissolution of Parliament for the general election, he was thrilled with the response.
Paul added: “With what we have done so far in terms of raising awareness, so many people have asked me about it.
“A lot of employers have said they are keen to adapt their processes for the sake of the people who need these procedures.
“They want to make sure they are not restricting their workers by not giving them time off. It’s great to see the response it’s had.
“There have been so many messages asking about it and I’ve even been stopped in the street.
“It’s raised a lot of awareness about the issue of stem cell donation.”