On Thursday, January 16th a group of friends and colleagues from the Department of Plant Agriculture gave a little of their time and one pint of themselves to support and save the the lives of many across Canada. Joined by faculty, staff, and graduate students alike, 18 people donated blood at the University of Guelph's mobile clinic.
For nearly a year there has been a group of Plant Ag grads & personnel who come together every two months to save lives. Attracting the attention of more than 50 people during this time to participate in donation through the 'Partners for Life' program, organizer and graduate student, Fawn Turner, has also welcomed many new donors, explaining the procedures, the requirements for eligibility, and the rewarding nature of the experience.
Canadian Blood Services relies entirely on the donations of volunteers to ensure that they can save the lives of all accident and emergency victims in Canada, as well as maintain the lives of people such as those with anemia, many cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy, as a regular part of many surgical procedures, and the list goes on. It can take as many as 50 donors to save the life of one car accident victim! In addition, the requirements for blood transfusions can be frequent and need the contribution of many donors as a regular part of life.
For example, a little girl named Bailey, born in August 2013, requires blood transfusions as often as every 2-3 days requiring 3-5 people to donate each time to save her life (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qw8OcV7BWvY), as does 9 year old Grace who is 100% transfusion dependent every 21 days and requires 8 people to donate each time (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMwSmxnSjVM).
This means that the lives of thousands in Canada rely on the kindness of strangers to survive. Blood donation is a wonderful way to make a real and immediate difference in other people's lives. Plant Ag is proud to participate in blood donation & we hope that you will join us for our next donation in two months!