World Blood Donor Day
Blood Connects Us All. It is one of the crucial element of our species. Not only does it keep us going physically, but also binds us with the fabric of society. The power of bond that blood ingrains with our family or peers is truly intense, and irreplaceable. Perhaps this makes donation of blood as one of the noblest acts towards a fellow in need.
June 14th is seen as World Blood Donor Day. It’s time to celebrate the act of blood donation. Every year, the annual event is held in a host country to acknowledge the efforts of the blood donors towards serving humanity. This year its hosted in Greece with the theme “Blood Connects us All”.
The event is observed, widely celebrated by all the members states of WHO. The essence of the day is to thank and encourage the blood donors who give a life and bring a smile to the faces that are fighting for survival.
How did it all begin?
World Blood Donor Day is celebrated on the birth anniversary of Karl Landsteiner, an Austrian biologist who developed the modern system of classification of blood groups, and thereby distinguished the main blood groups in 1900.
Since 2004, the event is being celebrated and aims at raising the public awareness about the importance of safe blood donation by healthy people. The event was launched by the WHO, the International Federation of Red Cross, and Red Crescent Societies.
In May 2005, WHO established the World Blood Donor Day officially with 192 Member States at the 58th World Health Assembly. This was when the event moved beyond raising the public awareness; it started thanking the blood donors along with running multiple voluntary blood donation campaigns.
The main objective of World Blood Donor Day is to meet the demand of blood transfusion and blood product transfusion by the people in need all across the globe. The blood that is donated by self-motivated and unpaid donors is used to save the lives of many, including anemic women, accident victims, surgical patients, cancer patients, sickle cell anemia patients, people suffering from blood disorders, etc.
Besides the main motive, there are other objectives as well that the World Blood Donor Day serves. Some of them include:
The day marks the fulfillment of the sufficient blood supplied from voluntary donors all over the globe by 2020.
The day acknowledges the blood donors’ contribution and encourages them to continue doing so, thereby also convincing others to donate blood and save millions of lives.
World Blood Donor Day aims at obtaining 100 percent voluntary and unpaid blood donation from people all across the globe.
The ultimate aim of World Blood Donor Day is to minimize the death rates or mortality rates that occur because of the insufficient blood supply.
The event holds educational programs and campaigns to make the blood transfusion services even more effective.
Blood Donation Benefits
Despite such successful campaigns being run to raise the awareness about the World Blood Donor Day among the public, the WHO has observed that only 57 nations get 100 percent blood supply from voluntary blood donors. That means there are still several nations that are devoid of sufficient blood reserves for emergency cases.
The main reason behind this is the lack of knowledge. Most of the people think they lose the blood from their body while donating it without even realizing the benefits they will have after the blood donation. Some of the benefits of blood donation for donors are listed below:
It reduces the risk of cardiac arrests, cancer, and liver ailments by maintaining the iron level in the body.
New blood cells are developed to make up for the lost blood after the blood donation.
It helps you maintain your weight.
Blood donation releases your stress and thereby prevents premature ageing.
It enhances the healing process.
You get a free medical checkup as soon as you decide to donate blood. This is to ensure you are healthy enough for the blood donation.
Most importantly, you save someone’s life.
Blood Donation: Before, On and After
When you’re ready to donate blood, there are a few determinants you need to be aware of.
Before you Donate Blood
Make an appointment
Eat food that is rich in iron content
On the Day of Donation
Avoid smoking or consumption of alcohol
Eat a healthy meal and stay hydrated
Take your medication list at the blood donation site
Relax and do not panic
After you Donate Blood
Enjoy snacks to regain energy
Try and consume more of liquid diet
Encourage others to donate blood
Since 2004, when the World Blood Donor Day was first established, the event has advanced in its form, thereby encouraging more number of people to donate blood voluntarily every year. According to the World Health Organization, if only 1 percent of the total population donates blood regularly, a nation’s basic requirement of blood can be fulfilled.
Your few drops of blood can save a life. This year, pledge to stand together and support humanity by donating blood for those in need.