Share your reasons campaign boosts National Blood Donor Week, June 10-16
Donors celebrated for supporting Canada’s Lifeline
JUNE 10, 2019 (OTTAWA) – To support National Blood Donor Week, June 10 to 16, Canadian Blood Services is launching a new online tool (blood.ca/reasons) for anyone whose life has been changed by blood products to share their reason(s) for joining Canada’s Lifeline and help patients.
“Each year during National Blood Donor Week and on World Blood Donor Day, June 14, we celebrate and thank donors for their generosity and commitment to patients. Blood donors are a vital link in Canada’s Lifeline and more donors are needed to maintain a strong and consistent supply of blood and blood products. We encourage Canadians to visit our website and to share their personal reasons for donating and inspire their friends and family to join them,” says Rick Prinzen, Canadian Blood Services chief supply chain officer and vice-president of donor relations.
“After seeing my mom and sister not being well, as soon as I turned 17 I knew I would donate,” says Jakob Gallant whose mother Lori and sister Keelyn both suffer from platelet coagulation disorder and require blood transfusions regularly. “It wasn’t even something I had to think about. It’s funny because neither of them really looks sick. And they aren’t right now thankfully, but it will happen again. And they will need help again as will a lot more people that I know. You never know when someone close to you may need it,” says Jakob.
“My wife receiving a blood transfusion was a huge motivator to boost my donations,” says Byron Link, a retired RCMP officer who donated his first pint of blood in Manitoba in 1965 at age 21. In 1996 while stationed in Prince George, B.C., his wife became ill and a blood transfusion saved her life. In 2002, Byron and his wife moved to Kamloops, B.C. where he continued to donate as often as he could. Last year on May 22, 2018, he made his milestone 150th donation and since then has donated four more times.
“Everything we do to help patients in Canada depends on donors who give so selflessly and are very dedicated,” says Prinzen. “Many Canadians have reasons for donating blood and the donations ultimately help patients through difficult health challenges and allow them to wake up healthier, every day.”
Visitors to the new web page can submit their reason(s) for donating blood or plasma, registering as a stem cell or organ and tissue donor, volunteering or giving financially. And, as a continuation of the “Reasons” multi-media campaign the organization launched in April, Canadians are also invited to use social media to post their reason(s) for being a donor, tag their followers and encourage them to do the same using the hash tags #WhatsYourReason, #NBDW2019 and #WBDD.
While we take this week to thank existing donors, Canadian patients also need new donors to join Canada’s Lifeline. This year, over 100,000 new blood donors are needed to maintain the national blood supply and meet the needs of patients who require blood transfusions. Canadians are encouraged to donate blood this summer to meet anticipated hospital demand. Blood donations often decrease during summer months because of holidays, changes in routines, travel and family activities.
Legislated by the Government of Canada in 2008, National Blood Donor Week recognizes and celebrates donors who selflessly help their fellow citizens. Events will be held in communities across the country throughout National Blood Donor Week to thank generous donors for their commitment to patients and to encourage new donors to join Canada’s Lifeline.
Making an appointment to donate has never been easier. Download the GiveBlood app, call 1 888 2 DONATE (1-888-236-6283) or book now at blood.ca. Walk-in appointments are also available at all locations.
About Canadian Blood Services
Canadian Blood Services is a not-for-profit charitable organization. Regulated by Health Canada as a biologics manufacturer and primarily funded by the provincial and territorial ministries of health, Canadian Blood Services operates with a national scope, infrastructure and governance that make it unique within Canadian healthcare. In the domain of blood, plasma and stem cells, we provide services for patients on behalf of all provincial and territorial governments except Quebec. The national transplant registry for interprovincial organ sharing and related programs reaches into all provinces and territories, as a biological lifeline for Canadians.
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