THE Rwanda Blood Transfusion Service has applauded Zimbabwe’s decision to unpack the World Blood Donor Day campaign alongside its Cyclone Idai project Idai where the National Blood Service of Zimbabwe (NBSZ) will provide financial support among other essentials to the Cyclone hit areas.
By Michael Gwarisa
In a solidarity message, Head of the Rwanda Blood Transfusion Services, Dr Gatare Swaibu said there is need to raise awareness for the need for regular blood donations to ensure communities have adequate blood stocks and Zimbabwe, through its World Blood Donor Day campaign have decided to take it a notch higher by also participating in assisting the Cyclone Idai affected people.
“This year, the World Blood Donor Day will once again be celebrated around the world in June 14, the event serves to thank voluntary and paid blood donors for their life saving gifts of blood and also to raise awareness of the need for regular blood donations to ensure all individuals and communities have access to affordable and timely supplies of safe and quality assured blood and blood products.
“Transfusion of blood and blood products saves millions of lives every year. As some of you may be aware, Rwanda is the host country of blood donor day, 2019. The global event will be held in Kigali on June 14, 2019 at the magnificent Kigali convention centre. This year’s theme is “Safe Blood for All” and this aims at raising awareness of the universal need for safe blood in the delivery healthcare and crucial roles that voluntary donations play in achieving the goal of Universal Health Coverage (UHC),” said Dr Swaibu.
A number of countries including Zimbabwe, will participate at the mega event which will see the world deliberating on various issues affecting blood transfusion, donations and access as well as proffering solutions to challenges. NBSZ’s Public Affairs Manager, Ms Esther Massundah has been chosen to speak at the event alongside other six presenters from six different countries.
“We are proud that many countries are participating and several National Blood Transfusion Services have committed their precious time to publicise the event. We just can’t thank you enough.
“Special appreciation goes to the Zimbabwe Blood Services for making time to unpack the World Blood Donor Day 2019 alongside their Cyclone Idai project. We urge other sister National Blood Transfusion Services (NBTSs) to follow into the footsteps of our brothers and sisters at the Zimbabwe’s NBSZ. Remember, When Rwanda hosts, Africa is hosting, kindly support,” said Dr Swaibu.
Meanwhile, NBSZ has unveiled its Cyclone Idai relief facility which is meant to provide basic health and financial services. The NBSZ Idai program is divided into three phases. The first Phase will see Mutare blood donors and support staff assisting the Cyclone affected people with various clothing items and these are ready for handover. The items will be handed over to the Command Centre before end of April.
Under phase two, the NBSZ will assist the affected blood donation panels after indications that six blood donation panels were affected by the Cyclone Idai. Phase three will also see a provincial Golf Tournament to raise awareness and support NBSZ community initiative from the Manicaland business community being held.
On July 6, NBSZ takes WBBD commemorations to Manicaland Province on a venue to be announced where they will handover some of the proceeds from their charity initiatives.