Eastenders star Pooja Shah has turned out to support a campaign encouraging those from ethnic minority backgrounds to join the organ donor register.

The 32-year-old who moved to Waddon last year was at the Whitgift Chopping Centre, Croydon on Saturday October 15 and emphasised why the cause is important to her.

She said: “It is an extremely serious situation. People are dying every day because there are not enough people donating, and the numbers from ethnic minority backgrounds are terrible. People don’t realise an organ is much more likely to be accepted by the receiver if they are from the same ethnic background. More than 1,000 Asian people are currently waiting for a life-changing transplant as a result. ”

The number of black and Asian people joining the Organ Donor Register is increasing but only 1.4 per cent on the register and from Asian backgrounds and 0.4 per cent are black.

Ms Shah, who plays Kareena Ferreira in Eastenders, and has appeared in smash hit movie Bend it Like Beckham, was joined on Saturday by Lloyd Dalton-Brown, who made the decision to donate his sister’s organs after she was hit by a truck aged just 29.

Mr Dalton-Brown whose sister Jane lived in Purley at the time, said: "When they found her she had an application to work for Starbucks on her and I was down as next of kin.

"Nine months earlier I had made the decision to join the donor list and when they asked at the hospital if they could have Jane's.

"It was a difficult decision but afterwards I spoke with her friends and they all agreed it was what she wanted."

Mr Dalton-Brown said five people had benefitted from being given his sister’s organs.

To sign the register visit www.uktransplant.org.uk