Bonded By Blood: A Mother's Story

Donate blood in memory of Richard Okorogheye

Mothers are appealing for more Black donors to help people with sickle cell, like Richard.

19-year-old Richard Okorogheye first appeared in national news in April 2021 after disappearing from his home in London. He had sickle cell disorder and needed regular blood transfusions to stay well. Sadly, two weeks later, his body was found 20 miles away in Epping Forest.

In Richard's memory, Bonded By Blood, a coalition of mothers who have seen the lifesaving power of blood first-hand, and blood charities, are urging more members of the Black community to donate blood.

There are currently 15,000 people with sickle cell in the UK which mainly affects people of Black heritage. Many people living with sickle cell require regular blood transfusions. Black donors are ten times more likely to have the rare blood sub type needed to provide the best match.

A greater number of Black people are stepping forward to donate blood, but to meet hospital demand we need more.

How you can help

A series of special blood donation sessions will be held in Richard's memory across London, Manchester, Birmingham and Bristol.

These will take place in September for World Sickle Cell Awareness Month, and October during Black History Month.

Book an appointment and join a community of lifesaving donors.

Book your appointment

Complete the form and we'll contact you to book an appointment.

You can also call our dedicated booking line on 0300 303 2805.

Register your interest

Find your session


To book an appointment at one of these sessions, please fill in our online form.

You can also call our dedicated booking line on 0300 303 2805.

A mother's story

Mothers up and down the country have seen the lifesaving power of blood used to treat illnesses like sickle cell, during childbirth, emergencies, blood cancer and a range of other medical conditions.

Hear powerful stories from mothers who have supported children through blood transfusion journeys.

Evidence and Richard

Evidence and Richard

19-year-old son Richard Okorogheye had sickle cell and received regular blood transfusions. Richard’s body was found in Epping Forest, Essex, two weeks after he went missing.

Read Evidence and Richard's story.

Jessica and storm

Jessica and Storm

Jessica shared her terrifying journey into motherhood after her 'sassy little fighter' was born just one day after the 24-week legal abortion limit, weighing just 1lb 4oz. 

Read Jessica and Storm's story.

Sabrina and Aamilah

Sabrina and Aamilah

After being diagnosed with Leukaemia aged four, Aamilah received various blood and platelet transfusions as part of her treatment.

Read Sabrina and Aamilah's story.

Adijatu and Addfreya

Adijatu and Adfreya

Adijatu’s daughter Adfreya was diagnosed with sickle cell disorder at the age of six. She now receives blood transfusions every three weeks.

Read Adijatu and Adfreya's story.

Bonded By Blood charities

The four Black health charities and individuals behind the campaign include the Richard Okorogheye Foundation, blood cancer charity ACLT (African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust), community organisations Unsickle My Cells (CIC) and SickleKan.

The campaign is supported by NHS Blood and Transplant.