Blood donation marks the International Volunteer Day

Dec 7, 2012

UN Volunteer being assessed for blood donation. Photo: UNDP Lao PDR/Eeva Nyyssonen

UNV-Lao Red Cross, Vientiane - Vientiane Lao Red Cross, Government partners, embassies, volunteer organizations, volunteers, Lao National University and UN officials celebrated the International Volunteer Day (IVD) on December 7th at the UN House with a blood donation under the theme ‘Volunteer Action Counts’.

The International Volunteer Day (IVD), established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1985, is an initiative where thousands of people all around the world celebrate volunteerism and commemorate its contribution to building the world we want.

The UN Volunteers programme in Lao PDR has been supporting blood donation since 2007 and organized the 11th campaign in the occasion of the International Volunteer Day 2012.

The event was attended by some 60 participants including His Excellency Laoly Faiphengyoa, President of the Lao Red Cross Society, Vice-President of National Blood Transfusion Committee and Mr. Minh Pham, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative. Following the opening remarks, students, partners and officials become volunteers by supporting the two blood donation sessions facilitated by the National Blood Transfusion Centre of the Lao Red Cross.

Mr. Pham praised the contribution of the all volunteers across the country and said “Volunteerism constitutes a key component for a more inclusive growth strategy in Lao PDR through the promotion of people’s greater participation to enhance the sustainable development of the economy, society and environment of Lao PDR as a whole.”

His Excellency Laoly Faiphengyoa highlighted the importance of blood for all human beings and the crucial role it plays in saving lives and treating patients around the world in case of accident, surgery and disease.

According to WHO, it is estimated that at least 1% of the population in a country would need to donate blood to secure an adequate blood supply. This means that in a country like Lao PDR, with a population of 6 million, an adequate supply of blood would be 60,000 units (1 unit=350ml) per year. In 2011, 27,000 units were collected. The target for 2012 is 30,000 units. Everyone’s support is needed to achieve adequate blood supply. After donation and testing, blood can be stored a maximum of 35 days but it is normally used within a week.

(Press release by UNV/Lao Red Cross)

Contact information

Dr. Chanthala Souksakhone / Lao Red Cross
chanthala2010@gmail.con Tel.: 214763

Ms Khamkhoune Xalayath, UN Volunteers, T.: 267757

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