Remember to donate

Summer months are of course packed with all kinds of great experiences, from those long-awaited vacations to get-togethers to simply relaxing in one’s backyard and relishing the heat and sunshine after yet another unrelenting Alberta winter.

But there is one community need that never lets up – the demand for blood donations. To that end, the 12th annual Sirens for Life campaign recently kicked off and runs through to Sept. 1st.

It’s a powerful reminder of the importance of donating especially when more people are out and about, and tend to delay or forget about regularly giving at the local blood donation clinics.

Organizers describe Sirens for Life as a campaign joining the Red Deer RCMP and the Red Deer Emergency Services. It also encourages the public at large to get behind the cause, and donate blood on behalf of these public servants.

Their goal is to get as many donations as possible throughout the course of the campaign, which used to include a competition between the RCMP and EMS to see who could bring in the most donors. But the mandate has changed.

Organizers say bringing the two together works even better for the common goal of the campaign.

In the past, nearly 100,000 new blood donors in Alberta donated during the campaign. And it’s critical to do so all the more, as the Canadian Blood Services is at an all time low for donations in the last five years. All blood donors are needed, in particular those with Type O and A blood.

Central Albertans are reminded that blood donations are needed around holidays in general, so current and first-time blood donors from coast to coast are being urged to make a blood donation and become regular donors throughout the year.

According to the Canada Safety Council web site, more fatalities occur on Canadian roads during the summer months than any other time of year and 85% of these collisions are considered preventable. It can take up to 50 donors to help save the life of someone in a car crash.

While it is not possible to prevent all traffic crashes from happening, it is possible to ensure blood is there for all Canadian patients when they need it. Canadian Blood Services forecasts that they will need almost 30,000 appointments each week during the summer to meet demand.

To book an appointment download the ‘GiveBlood’ app, visit www.blood.ca or call 1-888-2-DONATE.

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