Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel in Taree are getting ready to roll up their sleeves and donate much needed blood at Taree Donor Centre as part of the 2022 Defence Blood Challenge.
The challenge sees personnel from the Navy, Army and Air Force, as well as Defence civilians, going head-to-head to make the greatest number of blood and plasma donations.
The friendly competition is sure to help boost supplies for Lifeblood and it is hoped the three-month challenge will generate 11,000 donations from Defence personnel.
Australian Red Cross Lifeblood spokesperson, Ruth Harrison said the challenge comes at an important time, with cancellations still up and donor numbers still down after a long winter.
"Each year our Defence men and women lead by example and give blood and plasma," Ruth said.
"Given their already-outstanding contributions to this nation, it is amazing that thousands of Defence personnel and civilians still find the time to roll up their sleeves and save lives.
"Cancer patients, pregnant mums, their unborn babies, trauma and burns victims, and people battling blood disorders are among the thousands of Australians who rely on lifesaving donations every week.
"We need 150 donations every week at Taree Donor Centre to meet patient demand for donated blood.
"You don't have to be in the armed forces to save lives."
Local army reservist, Brent Hodge has organised a contingent to give blood at the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood Donor Centre on Monday, November 28.
"The army component is booked in and our members will be there on Monday to donate blood," Brentt said.
In addition to their blood donation generosity, the army wants to send a message to the community that although the natural disasters of the last 18 months are behind us, the army still has a presence in the region should those situations arise again.
"We're still around," Brent said.
"People would have seen the army arrive for the floods back in February last year, and now people believe they've just left town. That's not the case.
"What we want people to realise is that we're still around and wanting to expand and recruit new members to serve the community as well as the nation as a whole."
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