Free Press blood drive has saved many lives

Celebrating the success of the Free Press camapaign, '100 donors in 100 days' are back l-r Liz Bodkin, Jenny Atkins, Sarah Edge, Gemma Barker and Marie Collinson-Wallace, all Donor Relations Assistants. Front l-r Louise Rendi, DRA, Holly Mason, Lead Donor Relations manager, Simon Blakeman, area donor relations manager and Gillian Harrison, RDA. Picture: Marie Caley D3695MC

Celebrating the success of the Free Press camapaign, '100 donors in 100 days' are back l-r Liz Bodkin, Jenny Atkins, Sarah Edge, Gemma Barker and Marie Collinson-Wallace, all Donor Relations Assistants. Front l-r Louise Rendi, DRA, Holly Mason, Lead Donor Relations manager, Simon Blakeman, area donor relations manager and Gillian Harrison, RDA. Picture: Marie Caley D3695MC

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A FREE Press campaign which aimed to get 100 new blood donors in 100 days has more than tripled its target.

Thousands of Doncaster residents have helped save lives by signing up to give blood at a time when there was a high risk of blood stocks falling dangerously low.

We teamed up with NHS Blood and Transplant in April in an effort to ensure that life-saving blood donations continued despite a bumper summer of sporting events.

An inspirational 358 donors came forward in the 100 days of our campaign - with an outstanding 358,307 attending sessions across the borough.

Holly Mason, lead donor relations manager, said: “Thank you to everyone who signed up to become a blood donor in Doncaster over the past 100 days, We have had a fantastic response to the campaign and many lives have been saved due to the generosity of the residents of the borough. Well done Doncaster!”

Over the course of the campaign, we gained support from health chiefs including Doncaster’s director of public health, Tony Baxter, who praised the campaign as a “fantastic initiative”.

Doncaster North MP and Labour Party leader Ed Miliband also championed the cause along with Doncaster mayor Peter Davies.

We have also heard from those who rely on the generosity of blood donors including grandmother-of-seven Mary Hutton. The 79-year-old, Goodison Boulevard, Cantley, needs fortnightly transfusions for a degenerative bone disorder.

She said: “I think it’s been a really good way to highlight the need to give blood as I’m sure lots of people will have thought of what it would be like if they had a relative who got ill and needed help in the way I do.”

Graeme Huston, editor-in-chief of South Yorkshire Newspapers, said: “Thank you so much to everyone who has supported our campaign. We know we can always rely on the people of Doncaster to get behind a good cause - and this has been no exception.

“People continue to need blood - and your efforts are guaranteed to save lives so please continue to attend sessions and encourage others to sign up. It’s such a simple way of making such a huge difference to other people’s lives.”

To book an appointment at a blood donor session call the Donor Line on 0300 1232323 or visit www.blood.co.uk.