South Africa
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Western Cape Blood Service launches its biggest donation campaign ahead of Christmas

Cape Town - The Western Cape Blood Service (WCBS) is set to launch its biggest blood drive this coming weekend.

The campaign which is set to go live on Saturday, will be active in ten malls across the province as the WCBS attempts to collect 1000 units of blood.

WCBS Public Relations Manager Marike Gevers, said that the service always aimed for at least a 5-day bloodstock. But currently there was only a 2-day supply in O+ and a 4-day supply in O- and A+ blood groups, prompting them to get creative to replenish its stock.

She said: “There are multiple reasons for blood shortages. Blood stocks tend to decline during the winter months, as people suffer from colds and flu and subsequently are unable to donate blood.

“The Covid-19 pandemic also added extra pressure on the blood stocks. The cold weather also affects the turnout at blood donation clinics,” Gevers said.

“Our campaign 1 day–10 malls–1000 units of blood will be the first of its kind, and the biggest we have ever attempted to do. To achieve it, we are calling on all eligible donors to give their Christmas gift early this year and donate some blood. A single donation can save up to 3 lives,” she said.

The WCBS has partnered with malls Blue Route, Kenilworth Centre, N1 City, Tygervalley mall, Capegate, Bayside, Promenade, Somerset mall, Whale Coast mall and Langeberg mall.

On Saturday, October 30, the malls will have active WCBS stalls open from 9 am until 4 pm.

“Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, collections at schools, tertiaries, and corporates were curtailed due to venues not being able to host a blood donation clinic.

“ We used to collect annually about 27% of our units from the youth between the ages of 16 and 25. With a drive of this magnitude, we are hoping to clock a significant amount of blood,” Gevers said.

“So we are appealing to all donors, everyone from those who used to donate before Covid to new donors, to donate blood so that we can have a sufficient blood supply for the Western Cape, especially as we are approaching the festive season,” said Gevers.