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Melvyn Jones Lions Club donates blood |31 May 2021

Melvyn Jones Lions Club donates blood

The Melvyn Jones Lions Club of Seychelles on Saturday organised a blood drive, at the Ministry of Health’s Blood Transfusion Centre.

Starting off just after 8am, the event saw 20 plus blood donors taking part in the activity, towards helping the health authorities to meet the urgent need for patients facing trauma and other lifesaving procedures.

By around 10am, a total of 17 donors had already been tended to, and a further 10 were expected before closing at 1pm.

Health Care Agency (HCA) doctor and coordinator for all activities involving the Lions Club, Dr K. Viveg, is a member of the Mevlyn Jones Foundation which has been organising such events for the past five years.

“We are here today with our President along with our members and other friends from the PillayR Group, the Shreeji Group as well as our personal friends who came to donate blood. I personally think that this activity is successful, as there is a demand for blood in the hospital, so as a volunteer organisation, we want to show our support to the nation by doing this noble job. We want to be heroes as donating blood is a sign of heroism,” Dr Viveg stated.

So far this year, the blood drive is the second organised by the Lions Club, although the club is willing to organise more in the near future, with a second phase to be held before the end of June.

“We concluded the first of the activity with 21 successful donors, and six others who were turned down because of raised blood pressure or low haemoglobin. But we want to thank them for their support, as well as those who supported the club in this timely activity,” Dr Viveg added.

Donating blood can help save lives, as well as improving health. Blood transfusions are needed for a variety of applications including pregnancies with complications, patients with severe trauma, in addition to many complex medical and surgical procedures.

As blood can only be stored for a limited time before use, there is a constant need for regular blood supply. Regular blood donations by a sufficient number of healthy people are needed to ensure that safe blood will be available whenever and wherever it is needed.

Chief technologist for the Clinical Lab and Blood Transfusion Centre, Joanne Michel, highlighted the challenges faced by health authorities in ensuring an adequate supply or stock of blood, especially with the Covid-19 pandemic that have resulted in the cancellation of blood drives the world over, coupled with lower turnout due to concerns over Covid-19 exposure.

“We encourage associations and organisations to do these blood drives, whereby we have a group of people come in to donate blood. As you are aware, we are really in a crisis now because with the Covid-19 pandemic, we are seeing fewer regular donors coming to give blood. So, we encourage these partnerships,” Ms Michel said.

“The Lion’s Clubs have always been very faithful, as they try to organise one every four months. They have brought about 30 plus donors and it’s going to really help us, as we have patients now who are in need of blood for different conditions, so it will really come in useful. To get a group of 30 in one day is really good. On a normal day we usually have around 5 to 10 donors but to have 30 in a day is really good.”

Ms Michel proceeded to thank the Melvyn Jones club members for their support, going further to appeal to other organisations, associations, departments and institutions to also organise such drives with employees and friends of the organisation.

Individuals and organisations who wish to donate blood are advised to contact the ministry for further information.

The accompanying photos show some highlights of the blood donation drive by the Melvin Jones Lions Club.


Laura Pillay


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