The Ministry of Health and Sanitation in collaboration with the National Safe Blood Service Global Fund in Sierra Leone has ended a two-day training programme for blood donor promoters at the Sierra Leone Red Cross Society office branch at Maxwell Khobe Street in Kenema.
At the opening session the Chairperson of the programme Sister Hawa Daramy of the government hospital in Kenema extended her appreciation to the Ministry of Health and Sanitation saying that the training is important and timely.
Sister Daramy disclosed that over 500 women die during childbirth as a result of lack of blood, adding that Sierra Leone has been rated the lowest in the Human Development Index because of high level of infant mortality.
She described safe blood donation, as a unique deed from one person to another and that the human body is the only manufacturer of blood.
Sister Daramy said the objective of the training is to encourage the spirit of voluntarism and public activities of the service.
She said it is to increase and improve safe blood service promote the donation of more blood to save the lives of people, adding that there is need to educate or raise awareness on the importance of blood donation in our community.
She says blood donation is in many ways done to save the life of others and that the exercise is also geared towards encouraging a repeat blood donation for new blood donors from low risk population.
The District Health Sister Kenema Agnes William also said blood donation is another process that helps the individual to know their health status on HIV/AIDs and other diseases.
In his contribution the coordinator of the Sierra Leone Red Cross Society (SLRCS) Branch in Kenema Jumu Brima appealed to the volunteers to join the Sierra Leone Red Cross volunteers group so that they can improve their capacity.
Mr. Jumu Brima encouraged them to serve the national volunteers work, saying that it is human service, which was started by the founder of Red Cross James Henry Donald.
The laboratory Superintendent of the government hospital Jimmy Masalay in his contribution assured the general public of quality laboratory facilities at the government hospital for blood storage and that his office is always open to serve the community. He therefore encouraged all and sundry to visit the laboratory at all times.
The National Programme Manager of Safe Blood services Dr. Kadie Yillah thanked all the volunteers who had come on board to donate blood to save lives.
Saying that the high maternal and infant mortality rate in the country requires the intervention of more blood donors, she encouraged them to take the training seriously, as they are ambassadors through their communities and appealed to them to disseminate the information to others.
Dr. Yillah maintained that the training is a continuous programme as similar training is going on in Bo and that all heads of Institutions are aware of the importance of safe blood services programme saying that the volunteers are contributing to national development and that they should continue the good work.
She however encouraged more people to come onboard to support the course of voluntarily blood donation, saying that blood is life.
Abdulai Bockarie a volunteer gave the vote of thanks at the end of the training.