School leavers must continue donating blood

2016-01-21 06:00

THE South African National Blood Service (SANBS) salutes the 2015 matrics and other pupils on their good academic performance.

Not only did many perform well they also committed to donating blood regularly thereby saving numerous lives.

Nationally, people between the age of 16 and 19 constitute 21% percent of SANBS’s total active donor base, which is about 490 000.

To ensure there is sufficient blood stock available, SANBS needs to collect 3 000 units of blood every day - each unit has the potential to save three lives.

“These young people are truly exemplary South Africans. They have made the decision to sacrifice their time to donate a unit of blood to somebody they will never meet.

“We are proud of them for their willingness to give blood while working hard to excel academically and overcoming whatever challenges they face,” said SANBS chief marketing officer, Thapelo Mokoena.

Pupils’ consistent participation in blood drives is made possible through carefully considered partnerships with schools. Various governing bodies, principals, heads of department, teachers and parents play a big role in encouraging young people to donate blood.

Arranging blood drives at schools is not easy because the demanding academic schedules and extracurricular activities must not be compromised.

Last year the blood service hosted blood drives at 1 161 schools and invites more schools to become partners and host a blood drive every two months.

Mokoena hopes matriculants will continue to donate even though they have left the basic education system.

“Whether they join the workforce, enrol in a tertiary institution or take a gap year, it will give us great joy to see them saving lives from wherever they are, and to remain part of the SANBS family.”

For more information on how to arrange a blood drive, contact 0800 11 90 3 or email - Supplied.

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