A Pint of Blood – World Blood Donor Appreciation Day

A little girl once came up to me and said, “A bottle of blood saved my life, was it yours?”

I’m going to start this post with a short story about a girl named Ruchi, who was a twenty year old student in Manipal. A hardworking young girl, she had managed to somehow get perfect grades and had crawled into the good books of most of her professors. Her agreeable personality ensured she had a decent group of friends to rely on and drag her out of DeeTee on Saturday nights. This girl had an exceptionally close relationship with her roommate, Ananya.

One fine day – or rather, Saturday night – it was 2 a.m. and Ruchi wasn’t back in the apartment. Ananya was beyond worried. She was pacing around the room, trying to call her roommate who didn’t seem to want to pick up her phone. Suddenly her phone showed a text message. Hoping it was from her missing friend, Ananya eagerly opened it only to find a chain message forward asking for a Blood Donor. Apparently some girl had an accident and urgently needed AB- blood. Presuming it was spam, she put away her phone and flopped back on her bed. Although Ananya was an AB-, she simply ignored the message and went back to calling her friend.

And that, friends, is the story of how Ruchi, a girl with AB- blood group, died for the want of blood.

Now, Ruchi is just a character I made up; just a representation. Ruchi could be your roommate, friend, sister, girlfriend, boyfriend or anyone else. But this story could have gone differently had there been more people willing to donate blood.

This is why the WHO decided to celebrate 14th June as the ‘World Blood Donor Appreciation Day” – to appreciate the people who give a little bit of themselves to save the lives of girls like Ruchi.

Donating blood just takes about twenty minutes of your time but can give a new life to someone. Also, losing blood is a great way to lose some calories. Few people know this, but you can lose up to six hundred and fifty calories per donation. (Although most doctors would recommend exercise instead). Regularly donating blood is a great way to feel good about yourself and who knows – maybe you yourself need that blood someday.