Campaign draws out more blood donors

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Winnie Wang watches  as Charles Frische donates blood for the 58th time in Whangarei in June. The Blood Service wants more Northlanders to donate and will be in the region over the next two months collecting blood. Photo / John Stone
Winnie Wang watches as Charles Frische donates blood for the 58th time in Whangarei in June. The Blood Service wants more Northlanders to donate and will be in the region over the next two months collecting blood. Photo / John Stone

A campaign to get more people to give blood has been a success so far, with Northlanders keen to donate able to do so in the region next month and in November.

The Missing Type campaign, an international drive run here by the NZ Blood Service, in conjunction with NZME - publishers of the Northern Advocate - and almost 80 other companies, ran last week, hoping to find another 10,000 people who will register online to become first-time donors.

The missing types were blood groups A and O, and these letters were missing from the Advocate's masthead last Monday to highlight the need.

NZ Blood Service said in the first few days of the campaign 2000 people registered to become a donor - including many from Northland - which would help to improve or save the lives of up to 6000 people with their blood products. Blood Service CEO Sam Cliffe said the campaign was proving a success.

"The Missing Type campaign was a wonderful opportunity to have a serious conversation about the importance of blood donation. We couldn't have done this without the fabulous support of some of New Zealand's best-known and trusted organisations," Ms Cliffe said.

The Blood Service has around 110,000 blood donors on its database and about 42,000 people a year receive blood products. Every year around 28,000 drop off the donor registry.

She said getting younger donors was also a goal.

"If we get them at high school or school-leaving age, often they stay life-long."

People can register to be a donor at www.nzblood.co.nz.

The service's collection will next be at Forum North from September 12-14, then at the Northland Cricket Association from September 15-16.

The mobile collection service will be in the Far North in the week beginning November 21, visiting Kerikeri's St John Ambulance Station on November 21 and 22, Kaitaia RSA on November 23 and 24, and Kaikohe War Memorial Hall on November 25.

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