About Blakes Army



The secondary goal of Blake’s Army Limited is to help financially support families who are affected by Bone Marrow Failure. Blake’s Army Limited must raise the funds required in a manner that provides a benefit to Australian society as a whole and recognises those that provide unconditional support to cities, towns and communities right across Australia.

In 2016, Blake Dridan, a member of our club, was diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anaemia. At the time, we didn't understand the magnitude of this horrendous disease, but through Blake and his family, as a club, we feel as though we have lived the nightmare that Blake has endured.

The suffering that Blake has been through is something that until now, we have prayed would end with Blake pulling through and finally playing his first game for the club.


Leading up to Blake falling extremely ill, he was a quite young lad who enjoyed the simple things in life. He enjoyed being at school with his friends, he tried and played many different sports, he loved visiting his grandparents farm at Amphitheatre (a small Victorian country town) and above everything else, he just loves his pet dogs.

In November 2016, the first sign of the onset of this disease for Blake was bruising – nasty, nasty bruising. Blake was extremely fortunate that his parents did not disregard the bruises as “kid bruises” and got them checked out by their family GP.

At about 11pm on that same day, their phone rang. It was Melbourne Pathology sounding quite urgent, stating that Blake needed to be at the hospital immediately – there were no platelets left in his blood and he was effectively bleeding out.

Once Blake had been stabilised to an acceptable level, he was sent from Ballarat down to Melbourne’s Royal Children’s Hospital. After countless tests, blood tests, bone marrow aspirates etc., Blake was diagnosed with Severe Aplastic Anaemia. In these few days, Blake’s red cells and white cells had also started to fall. 

From this day, Blake would receive numerous transfusions of both red cells and platelets. This would continue as a stop gap until a course of treatment was determined by the specialists at the Royal Children’s Hospital. A treatment plan was of extremely high urgency as transfusions would only help for a certain period of time.

Blake’s specialist recommended a Bone Marrow Transplant. The potential side effects of this treatment are horrendous!! Leukaemia, Post-Transplant Lymphoproliferative Disease, Graft vs Host Disease – the list is horrifying, yet still the safest option.

To get the ball rolling, a suitable donor needed to be found. Family was not able to provide a close enough Bone Marrow match, so the world bone marrow donor register was searched high and low. The best match for Blake was from a person in Germany who accepted the opportunity to save Blake’s life.

From early January of 2017, the Royal Children’s Hospital and the Leukaemia Foundation units in Flemington Road would become home for Blake and his mother Michelle until Boxing Day 2017. 12 months away from home!!

As, what seems to have been promised, Blake endured numerous life-threatening complications throughout that entire year and to this day he bares so many scars from what he has been through.

Soon after transplant, Blake suffered pneumonia which made recovery extremely difficult. Blake’s own body would then try to reject the transplant, this is called Graft Versus Host Disease.

By June of 2017, Blake’s health deteriorated further and after testing it was found that he had PTLD, otherwise known as Post Transplant Lymphoproliferative Disease.

Individually Graft Versus Host Disease and PTLD are seriously life-threatening conditions. Together, however, treatment becomes extremely difficult and would require the most incredible treatment plan and a large dose of luck!!

To treat the PTLD, the medication to treat the Graft Versus Host Disease would have to be either lowered significantly or removed altogether. Damned if you do, damned if you do not.

Although Blake is still needing to fight extremely hard, both a pinch of luck and the most amazing work performed at RCH has Blake not only still with us, but with the brightest of flames burning within.

In honour of Blake’s battle, we are assembling an army for a return assault on Bone Marrow Failure. An assault like the world has never seen. An assault that will one day wipe Bone Marrow Failure from existence.

Please see linked donations options which automatically put you straight through to Blakes Army Ltd.

As an extra level of support, please follow and share Blake's_Army on twitter and #BlakesFight on Facebook

Thank you all for your support!!