“If you donate money, you give food. But if you donate blood, you give Life.” Once again, highly motivated by the quote, NSS IIT Roorkee organized a Blood donation camp. Three Blood banks of Uttarakhand- IMA Dehradun, Himalayan Jolligrant, Dehradun & Civil Hospital, Roorkee participated in the event which was organized form 9 am - 4:30 pm. A total of 855 people including students, staff & faculty members came forward to donate. From them, 707 units of blood were collected, which was 40 units more than the last year. This amount of blood could save the lives of more than 2000 people.
Dr. Pradipta Banerjee, the esteemed director of IIT Roorkee inaugurated the event in the presence of many other dignitaries where he examined the facilities and the necessary arrangements. He was upbeat about the enthusiasm displayed by the students and particularly impressed by the screening of the voluntary donors at three different levels since it is not a usual site at student level blood donation camps.The IMA had been allotted the students’ ward while the other two hospitals had their equipment in the family ward. The donor first registered himself by filling up a general questionnaire which consisted of questions regarding the donor’s medical history, followed by e-registration, before passing through three levels of screening. At primary level his weight and blood pressure were measured after which his level of haemoglobin was tested. Finally a blood donation kit sponsored by NACO (National Aids Control Organization) was provided. The prospective donors were helped at every step by zealous student volunteers from the various cells of the NSS. After the blood donation the donors were provided with refreshments along with certificates and mementos of appreciation. Three well equipped ambulances, one each of the participating blood banks were there to handle any problems that could possibly arise during the donation.
People participated in the event with great zeal and fervor. According to Subash Shivang, a second year student, the cooperation and association of the organizers was unparalleled. When asked about the pain during the donation, he replied that it was nothing compared to the agony of the people suffering with shortage of blood during emergency. Another student, Ashish Ranjan, a first time donor, confessed to being a bit nervous beforehand but the friendly nature of the hospital staff and the volunteers made him feel confident. Similarly another donor Aman Shrivastav said “Blood donation is important as you and your family members can also invariably be on the receiving end”. Dr. Smita Jha, the program officer N.S.S attributed the success of a blood donation camp to hard work, proper management, student cooperation and most importantly motivation and persuasion. “Myths are to be removed on scientific, technical and emotional grounds and masses should be made to realize that people are dying due to lack of blood during emergencies. Management was extraordinary, facilities superb and student participation excellent...”she added.
Highly prevalent and deeply rooted myths about the degree of safety and the health of donor often act as a barrier among the people and their will to donate blood. But the motivational lecture at the IITR convocation hall on the previous evening had been able to allay most of the fears in the people regarding myths associated with it. Blood donation is safe and rather makes a person feel relaxed. It has been scientifically proven that regular blood donors have low cholesterol levels. With booming population and skyrocketing spread of diseases it is estimated that the requirements of blood would increase by 5% every year. Hence this noble cause needs to be encouraged, promoted and supported by all possible means.