CANADA

Canadian Blood Service

Canada’s National Blood Donor Week, which ran from 11 to 17 June provided a good opportunity to thank all Canadians who donated blood on a voluntary basis.

The week started in Calgary, where more than 1 000 people, wearing special red T-shirts, came together to form the shape of a gigantic human blood drop. An aerial photograph was displayed widely, and could be seen on Canadian Blood Service’s web site: * www.blood.ca. The title of the event was “A Drop of Appreciation”.

On World Blood Donor Day itself, world famous baseball team, Toronto Blue Jays, hosted the celebrations during a match between them and Baltimore Orioles. More than 4 500 blood donors and recipients of blood and blood products attended the event. Long term blood donors and grateful recipients were among those who spoke at the event. Information booths were set up around the stadium where fans could get information about their blood type and how to donate.

Blue Jays second baseman Aaron Hill and team mascot Ace visited the Canadian Blood Services clinic on Wednesday morning to meet several donors and recipients of blood, marrow, platelets and plasma, many of them children. Hill commented, "It's a great cause for people who need blood, and we want to encourage people to come down here to the clinic. The people here will come to the game tonight and support us, and it'll be a good time."

Altogether, over a dozen Canadian cities, and the provinces of Newfoundland, Manitoba and Saskatchewan officially recognized National Blood Donor Week.

Contact:
Bernadette Vander Byl and Paula Arscott
Partnerships and Events
Canadian Blood Services


Héma-Québec

Héma-Québec launched its major summer campaign and recognized World Blood Donor Day at the same time. The campaign ran from 12 June to 10 September, and aimed to encourage Quebecers to give blood, even in the summer and during their vacation.

The third World Blood Donor Day was celebrated with a programme of activities and the publication of a special information booklet on the act of donating blood. Testimonies from blood donors, blood recipients and celebrity guests were broadcast, and the web site was updated with information about the day and the summer campaign.

The main promotional event was the distribution of a red T-shirt with an unusual design; two different sleeves, one long and one short. The left sleeve, which is short, refers to the act of giving blood, and proved to be an original way to represent and identify blood donors. Several celebrities were involved in the campaign and were seen on posters proudly wearing the T-shirts.

It is hoped that the Québec National Assembly will shortly adopt a motion proclaiming a National Blood Donor Week to coincide with World Blood Donor Day on 14 June. This initiative is headed by the Association of Blood Donation Volunteers in collaboration with Héma-Québec.

Michel Thisdel
Information Officer
E-mail: michel.thisdel@hema-quebec.qc.ca

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