Manchester City Council

Reds take root on Blues' turf for blood donation message

There's been a red invasion just outside the Etihad stadium.

But this is no football challenge - instead, it's a flowerbed of more than 3,000 red begonias planted into the hearts of the Give Blood emblem.

The flowerbed, on Ashton New Road, is just one of the ways in which Manchester City Council is try to encourage more people to give blood during National Blood Week (9-15 June).

The Lord Mayor of Manchester, Councillor Sue Cooley; Councillor Paul Andrews, Executive Member for Adults at Manchester City Council and Barbara Blanche, Lead Donor Relations Manager for Manchester at NHS Blood and Transplant visited the site today (Thursday 12 June), just ahead of World Blood Donor Day (Saturday 14 June).

Councillor Paul Andrews, Executive Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing, said: "We hope that this striking symbol on a main arterial route in Manchester will prompt people to think about giving blood. We really need more Manchester residents both new and lapsed donors to come forward to help this very worthy cause. None of us know when one of us might need a blood transfusion."

The flowerbed site, which was last used for the Commonwealth Games, has been prepared by a group of offenders on a community payback scheme and has been planted up by student volunteers. It will be in bloom for up to four months.

This is all part of the work that Manchester City Council is doing following a three year partnership with NHS Blood and Transplant to increase the number of blood donors and people signed up to the organ donation register.

Barbara Blanche, Lead Donor Relations Manager for Manchester at NHS Blood and Transplant said: "During this year's National Blood Week we are asking people to join our existing donors who are already part of the Greatest Team in the World. We are expecting there to be a fall in the number of people donating blood this summer as people become distracted by this year’s football World Cup or other summer sports. So to have the support of Manchester City Council is terrific and we hope the flowerbed will inspire people to sign up and start donating blood. "

NHS Blood and Transplant needs around 200,000 new blood donors each year across England and Wales to replace those who can no longer donate due to reasons such as ill health, pregnancy or foreign travel.

There is also a need for more young donors and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic donors (BAME) . Nearly half of those who have given blood over the last two years are over 45, and only 4% of active blood donors are from BAME communities, while they represent around 14% of the population.

Anyone aged 17 and over and in general good health can visit www.blood.co.uk or call 0300 123 23 23 to find a nearby session to give blood. Platelet donors can donate at two centres in Manchester - Norfolk House on Brown Street (M2 1DW) and NHSBT's Plymouth Grove site opposite the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital (M13 9LL). Go to www.blood.co.uk/platelets for more information.

 

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