According to the World Health Organization (WHO), this year’s theme will be “What can you do? Give blood. Give now. Give often”
In order to increase awareness on the day and mobilise members of the public to donate blood for free, MamaYe Koinadugu Community Advocacy Group will be one of the partners of World Blood Donor Day this year, together with the District Health Management Team (DHMT) and other partners in the district.
MamaYe and partners have met in the capital Kabala to discuss the campaign; it is estimated that thanks to this joint blood donation action 100 units of blood will be collected on the day within the Kabala Township.
Based on their activity plan, MamaYe Koinadugu Community Advocacy Group will identify and mobilise 30 blood donors, principally among those who have been active blood givers, while other partners will mobilise more blood donors.
DHMT on their part will lead on the blood donation process, by providing Lab technicians and making the necessary logistics to undertake the exercise available.
Steven Abdulia Gibrilla, Coordinator of the MamaYe Community Advocacy Koinadugu in 2006, was recommended by the National Safe Blood Services as the District Vocal Volunteer Safe Blood Promotion Lead. The Koinadugu District Safe Blood Donor Promoters are now included in the MamaYe Koinadug Advocacy Group campaign for safe motherhood for mothers and babies as a key partner.
The 2016 National Maternal Death Surveillance Report published by the Sierra Leone Ministry of Health and Sanitation through the Directorate of Reproductive and Child Health, shows that 706 maternal deaths occurred in 2016. The report went to reveal that the main causes of maternal death were largely bleeding, pregnancy-induced hypertension, infection, and unsafe abortions. Indirect causes include anaemia and malaria during pregnancy. Close to 20 percent of maternal deaths were among teenagers (15-19 years).
Blood is an important resource, both for planned treatments and urgent interventions. It can help patients suffering from life-threatening conditions to live longer and with a higher quality of life, and it supports complex medical and surgical procedures. Blood is also vital for treating the wounded during emergencies of all kinds (natural disasters, accidents, armed conflicts, etc.) and has an essential, life-saving role in maternal and perinatal care.
From WHO global front, the objectives of this year’s campaign includes:
- to encourage all people to strengthen the emergency preparedness of health services in their community by donating blood;
- to engage authorities in the establishment of effective national blood donor programmes with the capacity to respond promptly to the blood demand during emergencies;
- to promote the inclusion of blood transfusion services in national emergency response activities;
- to build wider public awareness of the need for committed, year-round blood donation, in order to maintain adequate supplies and achieve a national self-sufficiency of blood;
- to celebrate and thank individuals who donate blood regularly and to encourage young people to become new donors as well;
- to promote international collaboration and to ensure worldwide dissemination of and consensus on the principles of voluntary non-remunerated donation, while increasing blood safety and availability.