Brent pupils raise £1,000 to support sickle cell sufferers

Wembley and Harlesden pupils dressed in red to raise £1,000 for sickle cell charities

Wembley and Harlesden pupils dressed in red to raise £1,000 for sickle cell charities - Credit: Chalkhill Primary School

Pupils from two Brent primary schools have raised £1,000 to help support sickle cell sufferers.

Youngsters from Chalkhill Primary School, in Barnhill Road, Wembley, and Leopold Primary School, in Hawkshead Road, Harlesden, took part in World Sickle Cell Day on June 19.

Led by "the great science co-ordinator" at Chalkhill, Mrs Olie, whose daughter is a sickle cell sufferer, the pupils wore red and donated £1 to mark the day. 

Year 4 pupils Warren, Orion, Briseis and Siraj, who wrote a report of the day, prepared a statement - which read: "People donate blood to sickle cell sufferers to help them feel more comfortable but blood recirculates so the sickle cells will come back and affect the body.

"Sickle cell sufferers go to hospital countless times due to the severe pain that the sickle cell disease causes. People should help sickle cell sufferers."

Sickle cell disease is a genetic red blood cell problem that affects millions of people each year, they explained.

Sickle cell starts when two parents with sickle cell trait have a child and the disease gets its name from blood cells that are shaped like sickles or crescent moons.

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These sickle-shaped red blood cells carry less oxygen inside the blood, which makes sickle cell sufferers feel sick.

They are sticky and circulate in the blood like normal red blood cells which means that the pains can happen in any part of the body.

Teaching assistant Miss Corbette, said: “I have a very special reason to be active on Sickle Cell Day as I have a grandson who has Sickle Cell Disease.

"He is five-years-old and back in March of this year; he had a splenectomy - an operation to remove his spleen.

"The spleen is a very special organ in the body, which fights germs, controls the levels of red blood cells and filters the blood - removing any old or damaged cells.

"Unfortunately, my grandson’s spleen was not working and doing its job and as a result, he was having blood transfusions every three weeks, which is not good practice at all.

"It is vital that we do all we can to raise awareness and funds for sickle cell because it is not funded by the government and as such, sickle cell research relies on voluntary contributions.

"I am very proud to be working in a school that has sickle cell awareness at its heart due to the sterling work of Mrs Olie.”

Teaching assistant Mrs Gashi said: “I like that the children are aware and have more information about Sickle Cell Day.”

Miss Amankwah revealed that people underestimate sickle cell sufferers and what they go through in their life.

Pupil Vicenti, added: “I liked what we learnt about and how we could help.”