Christians join blood donation exercise

KIGALI - Hundreds of church goers from Christian Life Assembly, Nyarutarama,, yesterday, donated blood, with the aim of refilling the National Centre for Blood’s blood bank.
A Blood Bank official attends to blood donors, yesterday (Photo; G. Iribagiza)
A Blood Bank official attends to blood donors, yesterday (Photo; G. Iribagiza)

KIGALI - Hundreds of church goers from Christian Life Assembly, Nyarutarama,, yesterday, donated blood, with the aim of refilling the National Centre for Blood’s blood bank.

Andrew Munyemana, in charge of the Blood Selection unit at the National centre for Blood said that there was need for Rwandans to donate blood in order to save lives.

“There is a great demand for blood in Rwandan hospitals. A lot of patients injured from accidents, pregnant mothers at delivery, anemic children, malaria and HIV/Aids patients as well as those with chronic diseases like cancer and heart related diseases need blood transfusions,” said Munyemana.

According to Munyemana, there has been a slight increase in blood donations since the 1990s where 30,000 blood units were collected annually. Today an annual average of 40-50,000 blood units has been recorded and yet these are still low figures.

“We need people to give blood every three months if we are to cover the demand in hospitals,” he said.

According to Kenneth Agaba, a member of the congregation who was among the church cell group that organised the blood donation drive, “the church or Body of Christ is encouraged to donate blood.”

“Blood cannot be manufactured; it has to come from a living person to possibly save another life. There is usually need for blood although the need may be difficult to quantify. It is not until one is in need of blood or probably a loved one, a friend, a daughter or son; that people are able to understand the importance of blood donation,” Agaba said.

The blood donation idea was a result of a cell group discussion, and was one of the ways in which the church can bless their respective communities.

One blood donor, Tony Dila, said that besides donating blood he wanted to know his blood specifics.

“Besides participating in this noble cause where those in need of blood can be helped, I wanted to know my Rhesus factor,” Dila said.

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