Taree residents are being called on to join Australia’s Biggest Secret Santa this Christmas by donating blood and plasma.
More than 56 additional donors will be required between December 4 and 24 (Christmas Eve) to prevent a shortage of blood stocks.
Donors who give blood in December will receive a text message to say where their donation was sent and a festive tag to give to someone.
Australian Red Cross Blood Service spokesperson Stuart Ward said donating blood is the ultimate Christmas present to give someone in need.
“If Secret Santa is about giving anonymous gifts, designed to make someone’s day, then blood donation really is Australia’s ultimate Secret Santa exchange.
“Blood will be needed by road accident patients, pregnant mums, cancer patients and even premature babies every day this Christmas and New Year’s.
“With many people taking time off this holiday season we need those who can step up and be a life changing Secret Santa to Australian patients in need, ensuring no one misses out on receiving this incredible gift.
“Your blood donation will be the ultimate gift to Australian patients this Christmas and will have a far reaching impact on the lives you save and the lives of their loved ones.
“The donation of blood can be your present to anyone,” Mr Ward said. .
Mr Ward outlined the importance of donating plasma.
“The plasma is separated and your blood cells are returned to you which means you can donate every two weeks.
The donation of blood can be your present to anyoneStuart Ward, Blood Bank spokesperson
“Plasma can be converted into 18 life-saving products.
“The demand for plasma is growing and growing as technology advances and is used in more and more procedures so therefore we’re asking for people to roll up their sleeves and donate plasma this Christmas,” Mr Ward said.
Donor Ivor Thomas has brought up 25 donations.
He encouraged all residents to roll up their sleeves this Christmas.
“There’s nothing to be scared of.
“This is the gift of life, potentially for people who need transfusions or for any of the products and it’s literally giving someone the gift of life
“What better Christmas present could there be,” Mr Thomas said.
Mr Thomas got everyone in the Taree blood centre into the Christmas spirit by sporting a very festive jacket.
“It’s that time of year and if it brings a smile to someone’s face, why not,” he laughed.
The Australian Red Cross Blood Service hopes to welcome 20,000 new donors by Christmas to meet Australia’s growing blood needs.
To make an appointment or to find out more about the Secret Santa initiative, call 13 14 95 or visit donateblood.com.au.
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