Today was my last day with the Anthony Nolan Team. Honestly, I have no idea how come this month passed so quickly. Each week was slightly different as the team was changing and my tasks varied. In the last two weeks, I worked more independently. Mainly because most of the Register Development Team have been on annual leaves. As their email boxes were practically shut, many of them were directed to me, meaning I would start my day reading at least 20 emails. Not going to lie, it kind of made me feel important!
However, answering to emails wasn’t my only job. We were working on a huge change for the charity – from collecting saliva samples to swabs when recruiting new donors for the registers. I participated in meetings connected to that project and was helping the team with that transition. We had to make new information booklets, procedures, supplies order forms and trial events. They are hoping to launch it properly with the start of the new academic year. Fingers crossed!
Moreover, I was undertaking my independent research project, which involved analysing current recruitment strategies and finding new partnerships and ways to recruit more people, especially young males from ethnic minority groups. I think it was my most difficult task, but really interesting. I’ve learnt a lot about their work and strategic involvement with different organisations, groups and individuals. I have created a report that could help them in expanding the register and reaching the goal of recruiting 100 000 stem cells donors per year.
One of the best days I had in the office was the one spent in research labs! I’ve been given a tour around there, talked about the procedure of making the register, I’ve seen the way from saliva to the DNA sample and got a chance to ask all the questions I had. It was truly inspiring to see and discuss all the potential that stem cells have.
On the last day, I stayed 2,5h longer to finish everything. For the first time, I’ve seen a completely empty office! It really made me realise that it’s the end and I need to say bye. I finished the interactive map of managers that is now hanging on the wall in the office and left – proud and happy, but also a bit sad.
The team organised a lovely goodbye for me – they got me many freebies and took for an amazing lunch. And of course, as a part of ‘everyday cake policy’ in the office, there was a cake to celebrate my last day.
It was an amazing experience and I do believe that my story with Anthony Nolan has not really finished yet.