Members of the International Central Gospel Church (ICGC), Kharis Temple in Sakumono have donated blood to the National Blood Service, Ghana (NBSG).
The donation, which is an annual undertaking, was in response to a call by the National Blood Service through the Ghana News Agency for Faith Based Organisations to encourage their congregants, through their online mediums, to donate blood to restock the dwindling national bank.
Enthusiastic members of the church, who had trickled in steadily, were conscious of Covid-19 protocols as they donned their mask and observed social distancing whiles waiting in turns to donate blood.
The gesture, first of its kind by a church during the Covid-19 pandemic, was the church’s support to the fight and as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility to society.
Mr Stephen Danso, Principal Blood Donor Coordinator, National Blood Service, speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) at the church premises on Sunday, said within its ambit, the NBSG ensured the provision of safe, adequate and efficacious blood and blood products accessible and affordable to all patients requiring blood transfusion therapy in a timely fashion.
He said despite several interventions to achieve a 100 per cent voluntary blood donation across the country, it was still faced with a shortage which required a lot more donation to restock the blood reserves as the need for blood was increasing.
He noted that because blood could not be artificially manufactured, it had become necessary to seek voluntary donations by falling on faith based organizations to encourage their members to readily donate blood to save lives.
Mr Danso explained that the pandemic had dealt a blow on the service’s ability to get voluntary donors since educational institutions, religious organisation which formed a larger percentage of donors in the country were nonoperational due to the temporary ban on social gathering in the country.
“The situation has become critical as there is acute shortage of blood in the country which requires voluntary donations to restock the blood bank and make it accessible for patients in need of transfusion” he added, and called on cooperate bodies and other FBOs to donate and prevent needless deaths.
According to him, the average units of blood collected by the Southern Area Blood Centre is about 20 to 25 units whereas the Kole Bu Teaching Hospital alone required about 100 units of blood on a normal day which was inadequate to meet demands.
Dr Roland Eghan, a member of the Church’s Medical Team, reiterated the need for society to recognize the critical need for blood and make voluntary donations to refill the national blood bank to make it readily available to those who would need it during emergencies.
Mr Prince Lloyd Nyarko, Resident Pastor of ICGC Kharis Temple, who joined in the exercise, said the Church in acknowledging the possible need for blood amidst the pandemic, voluntarily called on its members to donate to saves lives as exemplified by Christ.
He said the church since its establishment barely nine years ago, had conducted six blood donation exercises in support of the National Blood Service.
Apart from reaching out to members of the church via social media platforms with the word of God during the Covid-19 pandemic, the church distributed food items to vulnerable members and others in Sakumono and its environs.