Young people urged to give bloodTuesday, June 15, 2021
KINGSTON, Jamaica — Director of the National Laboratory Services, Dr Michelle Hamilton is urging young people to voluntarily give blood and encourage their peers to donate blood as well.
Hamilton, who was speaking during the World Blood Donor Day Donor Awards held at the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) in Kingston on Monday, noted that voluntary blood donors help to sustain the blood donation system as blood is given 100 per cent by them.
World Blood Donor Day is observed on June 14 every year. This year's slogan was 'Give blood and keep the world beating', with special focus placed on the role of young people in ensuring a safe blood supply through voluntary non-remunerated blood donations.
Sonya Binns Lawrence, Jamaica's top blood donor, while speaking at the ceremony said, “For me, it has been a wonderful journey. It has been a good journey and I want to encourage donors. God has given us this chance to give back to our community and be a blessing to others.”
Binns Lawrence, who has donated 111 units of blood to date, encouraged others to become regular donors.
“It is a good, healthy habit to pick up. I've never had any negative effects. All you have to do is eat right, get a lot of rest, take your iron tablets or food that gives you iron and you are good to go,” she advised.
The ceremony also saw Prime Minister's Youth Awardee and Founder and Manager of I Have a Heart Foundation, Abi-Gaye Smythe, who has hosted seven blood drives, being recognised for her services. Approximately 184 units of blood have been collected from these drives so far.
Being a cardiac patient, Smythe is unable to donate, but depends on blood donations each time she has to do an operation. She said through organising these drives she is doing her civic duty of helping her fellow men.
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