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Police officer’s donation gives rare blood cancer patient a chance of survival



A Carmarthen police officer has described the honour of potentially saving the life of a person fighting a rare form of cancer as he encourages others to sign up to the bone marrow register.

When Dyfed-Powys Police PC Kieran Morris went through the stem cell donation procedure, he gave a blood cancer patient a vital chance of survival.

As he shares his experience with the aim of encouraging others to sign up to the Welsh Bone Marrow Register, he says the hope his donation would have given a family far outweighs the discomfort of the procedure.

Looking back, PC Morris said: “I’d been thinking about signing up to the bone marrow register since turning 18, although I wasn’t sure if there were any risks involved and I therefore put it off.

“I give blood every three months, and when the Welsh Blood Service was in my local village, I asked them some more questions about it. After finding out that there were no long term risks associated with donation, I decided to register myself.”

The Welsh Bone Marrow Register is a panel of blood donors who have volunteered to be bone marrow or peripheral blood stem cell donors. The register is scanned every day to find donors who match patients in need of a life-saving donation.

For two years after signing up, PC Morris didn’t hear anything. Then at the end of 2019, he received a phone call with news that he could change someone’s life completely.

He had been matched with someone fighting a rare form of blood cancer, and that a peripheral blood stem cell donation was vital in giving them a chance of surviving.

“I felt honoured,” he said. “I felt that I had a chance to possibly improve someone’s life, or even save someone’s life.

“The feeling of hope that the person may have felt when finding out that they had been matched must have been massive, so for that, I felt that I may have made a difference to that person’s life.”

PC Morris was one of five people matched with the patient, and was asked to give a blood sample in order to determine his exact level of compatibility.

Two months prior to the donation, he was told he was the most suited candidate to donate.

Before the procedure began, he had a counselling session at the Welsh Blood Service headquarters, and underwent a full medical test.

Once the match was confirmed, and he was declared fit, the procedure began at home. For five days, a nurse visited PC Morris to inject him with medication which allowed his body to produce extra stem cells.

“The medication affects people differently, but for me it caused some back pain,” he said.

On the fifth day, he visited a hospital in Newport for the procedure to take place. With the appointment taking place during the COVID-19 pandemic, PC Morris not only faced the stem cell extraction procedure, but the additional precautions in place to reduce the spread of the virus.

“It was very quiet,” he said. “It was at the start of the lockdown and seemed odd, though necessary, particularly as we were up in Newport, where cases have been high.

“I was the only person at the ward and all the staff had to wear gowns, masks and gloves. I was also tested for Covid-19 while at the hospital and given a questionnaire regarding my health and any symptoms I was displaying.”

The PC then underwent peripheral stem cell collection at the hospital, which took around seven hours.

“You have a choice of a procedure under general anaesthetic which involves an operation-style extraction of stem cells, or peripheral stem cell collection,” he explained.

“I opted for the peripheral stem cell collection as I was informed that it was the best type for the person that needed the donation.

“It involves a cannula in each arm, with one taking your blood and transporting it in to a machine, which separates your stem cells from your blood.

“The blood without the stem cells is then put back in to your body through the other cannula.”

He was allowed home the same day, and said the only side effect was tiredness and lethargy, which lasted around a fortnight.

Although most people are only chosen to donate blood stem cells once, PC Morris will remain on the Welsh Bone Marrow register in case he is matched with another person. If he is, he would then be taken off the register as one person can only donate twice.

Despite the discomfort, PC Morris is encouraging people to think of the difference they could make to someone’s life by signing up to the register.

“The cost to you would massively outweigh the benefits to the person needing the donation,” he said.

“I experienced back pain, which I knew I would recover from and it was only for a couple of days, whereas the donation could save the person’s life.

“It is not guaranteed that the person receiving the donation will recover from the cancer, though the hope that they and their sons and daughters and wider family would have felt just believing that they have a chance, would have been incredible.”

To find out more about bone marrow and stem cell donation, visit

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Police launch public appeal following Carmarthenshire burglary



DYFED-POWYS POLICE is investigating a burglary at a property in Ponthenry.

People broke into a shed at a home in Victoria Road at around 8.30pm on Monday, 31 October, before leaving after spotting a CCTV camera.

They returned at around 10.15pm and again at around 10.55pm.

During their raids they tooka green Wolf motocross helmet with a full face with a peak and line green motocross goggles.

Officers are appealing for help to identify two people they would like to speak to over the incident.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at:, by emailing, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Quote reference: DPP/0756/01/11/2022/02/C. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting

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Morrisons Foundation supports children’s charity with grant for vital equipment



The Morrisons Foundation supports registered charities that make a positive difference. They recently awarded national children’s disability charity, Cerebra, based in Carmarthen, a grant of £11,109.

This will fund the creation of writing slopes through the Cerebra Innovation Centre, which is partnered with the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and designs wonderful toys and equipment to help children living with a brain condition to learn and play.

The writing slopes are designed to help children who struggle with posture and fine motor skills. They also aid children with writing, drawing and hand control. Ross Head, Product Design Manager at the Cerebra Innovation Centre explains;

‘The slopes include a lovely wipe-clean surface for children to experiment with mark making, their own set of pens and a clever lid-free pen store to remove the challenge of removing lids for some children. We are so lucky to be able to do what we do and funding like this is so important to allow us to push boundaries and provide vital equipment that looks beautiful.’

At the start of 2022, the Cerebra Innovation Centre highlighted that they anticipated the need for an additional 20 writing slopes for children. Cerebra Fundraising Manager, James Hay then worked with the grants team at the Morrisons Foundation, who were delighted to support this project. David Scott, Morrisons Foundation Trustee said:

‘Cerebra is dedicated to helping families who have a child with a brain condition to discover a better life together, that’s why I’m delighted that we’ve been able to provide this support. The specialised writing slopes will make a huge positive impact on children with sensory and mobility issues, providing a great opportunity to develop their skills, which will last a lifetime.’

Grants like this are a vital source of funding for Cerebra so that they are able to continue to support children living with a brain condition and their families who face challenges every day. The Cerebra Innovation Centre is one of the many support services provided by the charity that so many families have come to rely on. James Hay adds;

‘Thank you so much to the Morrisons Foundation for this generous grant! We are over the moon as we know how much this project will change young lives. These are particularly challenging times for charities and so this funding from Morrisons for the creation of 20 writing slopes is warmly welcomed.’

You can find out more about Cerebra and how they help children and families by visiting 

Writing Slope
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White Ribbon campaign supported by Carmarthenshire County Council



CARMARTHENSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL says it is again showing its support for the White Ribbon campaign, which takes place on Friday, November 25 and is followed by 16 Days of Action.

White Ribbon is the UK’s leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls.

While domestic abuse affects both sexes, the largest number of violent incidents involve men against women. But ultimately male violence against women is everyone’s issue, not just women’s.

The council was awarded White Ribbon UK accredited status for the first time in 2018 and is continuing to work to tackle such violence.

White Ribbon flags will be flying at County Hall in Carmarthen and town halls in Llanelli and Ammanford on White Ribbon Day (Friday, November 25). County Hall will also be lit up on the evening to show support.

The council is working alongside partners to raise awareness of the campaign across the county – from sports clubs, joint visits with the Police to licensed premises, our leisure centres and libraries to bus stations.

With this year’s White Ribbon Day falling on the same week as the start of the FIFA men’s World Cup, there has never been a better time to come together and start playing as a team to end violence against women and girls.

The council will be raising awareness of the campaign at special events including a Walking Football session at Amman Valley Leisure Centre on November 30 and at “An Evening with Sam Warburton” at the Lyric Theatre in Carmarthen on White Ribbon Day (November 25).

Cabinet Member responsible for Community Safety, Cllr Philip Hughes, said: “It’s vital that we raise more awareness about domestic abuse so that anyone affected can get help and support from one of our local services.”

Support locally can be found at: Threshold (Llanelli) on 01554 752 422 or; Calan DVS (Ammanford) on 01269 597 474 or; Carmarthen Domestic Abuse Service on 01267 238 410 or and Goleudy on 0300 123 2996 or or call the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 or visit for free advice and support 24/7

For more information on the White Ribbon campaign visit

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