The Dubai Cord Blood and Research Centre in the United Arab Emirates is calling for more mothers to donate their children’s umbilical cord blood. The DCRC is worried there are insufficient cord blood samples from Arab families, which decreases the potential for families of certain backgrounds to find a viable donor.

The DCRC was founded as a national cord blood banking facility for the UAE in 2006. Since that time, over 3,300 samples of cord blood have been collected that resulted in nine successful cord blood stem cell transplants over the years.

The DCRC says cord blood awareness has improved across the country since the program was founded eight years ago. In 2010, approximately 150 samples of cord blood were donated by UAE families, a number that increased to over 320 as of the end of 2013.

But the heads of the program say despite the progress, there are still far too many families that choose not to bank or donate their baby’s cord blood. Fatma Al Hashimi is the head of administration at the DCRC, who believes improved awareness events and campaigns can help educate more families about the benefits of cord blood banking.

“The drives have made a big difference. As people have come to know, they have come forward to save their cord blood stem cells.”

Al Hashimi even supports introducing cord blood banking as a topic in health classes across UAE school districts. Health classes educate students about the very real actions and consequences of what is done to or with the human body, and Al Hashimi believes cord blood education should be included as one of those topics.

More details about the DCRC’s cord blood awareness plans are available by following the link here.