COMMUNITY CHALLENGE: WORLD SICKLE CELL DAY!

 

Today is World Sickle Cell day. A time for people around the world to come together to raise awareness on this blood disorder, how it affects people who are born with it and how many of us can help, by donating blood regularly.

Here at ACLT we know all too well the importance of donation (whether it be stem cell, blood or organ) and today, we are encouraging people from the African Caribbean communities to join our #BlackBloodChallenge.

 

HOW DO I JOIN THE #BLACKBLOODCHALLENGE?

We ask for all healthy individuals aged 17-65 to register to book an appointment with NHS Blood and Transplant TODAY to become a blood donor. Once you’ve booked your appointment, we then ask you to post a screenshot of your appointment confirmation across your social media, using the hashtag #BlackBloodChallenge.  (Make sure to cross out any personal details showing on the screen grab.)

You can book your blood donation appointment by clicking HERE

For those who are already registered blood donors, we ask for you to book your next appointment.

Our aim is to collectively make noise on this day which is recognised by the United Nations as a time to raise awareness of Sickle Cell Anaemia. Also, it is a time for us, the UK black community to have conversations regarding an illness which predominately affects African Caribbean people, whilst making a real contribution to help improve the lives of our people who desperately need blood transfusions from people they don’t know, but who have the same blood type as them by registering as a blood donor.

 

WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT TO BE A REGULAR BLOOD DONOR?

Young patients like 10 year old Miai rely on healthy people from the black community to be regular blood donors.

Miai was diagnosed with Sickle Cell Anaemia when she was a baby. Initially the condition didn’t affect her, however at just six months old she had her first crisis and was eventually admitted to hospital.

Miai received her first blood transfusion at the young age of 4 years old and has received a total of 6 blood transfusions in her short life.

The pain caused by a crisis can be debilitating and often a blood transfusion is the only treatment that makes an impact. Before a transfusion Miai is withdrawn and miserable and after she happy and full of life.

Miai’s Blood Type is B which is more commonly found in black people. It is therefore very important we encourage the black community to please donate to ensure there is enough in supply to meet demand and help individuals like Miai on the road to recovery. It is one of the most rewarding things a human being can do.