Responding to a critical stock shortage, and to mark Madiba's 93rd birthday and Nelson Mandela International Day 2011, 125 units of blood were donated by members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God (UCKG) on 18 July 2011. This blood could save the lives of 375 people.
The blood drive, the fourth organised in conjunction with the South African National Blood Services (SANBS) this year, is part of an on-going commitment to help ensure there is sufficient safe blood for medical emergencies. To date, blood donated by UCKG members has saved the lives of more than 1 500 people.
Anyone wishing to donate blood is carefully screened by SANBS staff to ensure they meet the donation criteria, which include living a sexually safe life-style. In South Africa every unit of blood is individually tested before transmission, to confirm its safety.
Inaugurated in 2009, Mandela Day provides an opportunity for everyone to contribute 67minutes of their time to some form of community service. This year, the slogan was "Take Action. Inspire Change. Make every day a Mandela Day." For members and volunteers from UCKG, they are already living this ideal through daily outreach projects aimed at assisting people in communities where the need is the greatest. The UCKG Help Centre works tirelessly serving nutritious meals, visiting the sick and aged, offering encouragement and hope.
One of their important campaigns is the regular distribution of condoms and HIV/Aids testing in communities nationally. This project is undertaken in partnership with the Department of Health and New Start with the objective of creating awareness of HIV/Aids and encouraging people to take care of their health. The blood donation campaign links to this objective because regular donors who are committed to giving safe blood to others are more likely to make wise life style choices to maintain their HIV- free status. This could help to reduce the prevalence of HIV/Aids.
Blood is a life-saving commodity and is the most precious gift you can give to another person. In order to respond to medical emergencies, SANBS has to have sufficient supply to meet demand.
Without available blood, lives are lost. UCKG is committed to saving souls and lives through donating blood.
Church members regularly devote more than 67 minutes a day to helping others, empowering communities and contributing to transformation in South Africa. You never know when you or a loved one may need a life-saving blood transfusion. Become a blood donor and give the gift of life - your blood.
For further publicity information, please contact Nametso Mofokeng, UCKG Public Relations, at 011 224 3400 / 011 224 3447 or on email: .