Newly-elected Red Deer North MLA Kim Schreiner visited Canadian Blood Services last Friday where she met local long-time blood donors and wished to thank donors for rolling up their sleeves.
Her visit also marked the kick-off of National Blood Donor Week, which aims to thank donors for their continued commitment and to encourage new donors to consider making an appointment.
Schreiner noted while on her way to the blood clinic that day she witnessed a minor fender bender in front of her. She noted if the accident had been worse, perhaps a victim might have needed blood – adding it reminded her of the importance of blood donation.
“You just never know when you or I or family member or friend may need blood and it’s very important to have it there when we need it,” said Schreiner. “It really hit home for me that the blood I was on my way to donate would be used to save lives – if we all donate then it is protection for all of us.”
While she isn’t a regular donor, she was in the Canadian Blood Services system when she arrived and stated she had donated in the past and hopes to continue again on a regular basis.
During the time she was giving blood, Schreiner met with local blood donor Ron Regehr who has been giving blood since he was 17 and has donated 38 times.
Regehr stated he felt continued blood donation was a way for people to be able to give back to their community in a big way.
“There are people encountering a need for blood constantly whether it be through accidents or surgeries and other situations where if they didn’t have blood given to them they would not survive,” said Regehr. “So it’s absolutely important on so many levels in our medical system to have that stock of blood there for when they need it.”
Judy Jones, associate director for Canadian Blood Services said the importance of long-term donors could be seen in people like Regehr who continually support the system, adding he is also good at getting new donors through the door.
“Life gets busy and sometimes you can’t find the time to donate, so the best thing you can do is encourage others to come in,” said Jones.
To book an appointment to donate blood, download the Canadian Services App on your smart phone or call 1-888-2-DONATE.