Firm Health Ghana Foundation (FHGF), a Non-Governmental Organisation in collaboration with Gold Fields Ghana Foundation (GFGF) and Rotary Club of Tarkwa, have organised its maiden blood donation drive in Tarkwa.
The event which generated 660 pints of blood, took place simultaneously at the Tarkwa and Fiaseman Senior High Schools, in the Tarkwa-Nsuaem Municipality of the Western Region.
Apart from the students who turned out in their numbers to join the exercise, a section of the public also came over to donate blood.
Commenting on the exercise, Dr Joseph Darko, the Director of Medical Services for FHGF and the Medical Superintendent of the Bogoso Government hospital, said the Tarkwa Municipal hospital was the biggest blood bank, which consumed about 2,400 pints of blood a year.
He indicated that at the last blood donation exercise, they were able to collect just 120 pints, which could last for a short period, so they decided to raise awareness for more support.
Dr Darko stated that “We all watch television and see what goes on in other countries. When they record mass casualties, people queue and the blood banks have enough blood to supply irrespective of the demand, but when you come to our part of the world it is a different story.”
“FHGF decided to address this issue by creating a common platform where people would voluntarily walk into any health facility to donate blood, so we decided to go for 1000 pints of blood. It’s not the blood itself but the process of getting it,” Dr Darko said.
He said sadly they had just three pints of blood in the Apinto Government hospital fridge, when in fact they should be always ready, every day and “that is the 1000 gift we want to give.”
He stressed that blood was life and the best gift anybody could give in this world, therefore the programme was an opportunity for people to support in giving life to the unfortunate ones who may need them.
Mr Sylvester Akpah, the Operations Director of FHGF, expressed appreciation to all the partners for supporting to undertake the exercise, which help stock the various blood banks in the Tarkwa-Nsuaem and Prestea Huni-Valley Municipalities as accidents occurred every day.
He thanked all those who came to donate blood to help save the lives of expectant mothers and accident victims who required immediate blood transfusion and appealed to other companies to come on board and assist in collecting more blood to stock the banks.
The Executive Secretary of GFGF, Mr Abdel-Razak Yakubu, said the Foundation spent GH￠70,000 to provide consumables, bags used to collect the blood, refreshment for the patrons, T-shirts among others to support the wonderful programme.
He said “in terms of emergency response, we all know of Appiatse and the recent explosion in Shama area, and since the Western Region is home of many natural resources and people exploit these in diverse ways, accidents do sometimes occur.
“It is only prudent that organizations such as GFGF would take the lead in ensuring that emergency blood supply in our various hospitals, so it does not just become a one often like we are doing today, but a culture where we may have it every quarterly to become a standard for the country,” Mr Yakubu indicated.
Mr Benard Asmah, a donor from Aboso, said donating blood was safe and appealed to the public to avail themselves during such exercise to save lives.