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Ukraine needs fresh blood: Volunteers shared their views on the problem of donation in the country

On the eve of the International Blood Donor Day, people from different parts of Ukraine and representatives of various professions told why they decided to donate blood, what they do charity work for and what motivates them.

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Transport infrastructure project manager Vlad Samoylenko actively began donating blood (plasma first) in the spring of 2014 for the military.

I need change

"We survived the terrible year of 2014, and since I did not rush to the war, I realized that I should help other various small things. First of all, the military. Then the enthusiasm and desire to help boiled among all normal and active people, and gave rise to the right habits, trends. When the situation stabilized somewhat, and I began to understand these issues more, I learned that sometimes parents cannot find a dose of platelets for their children in Okhmatdat, even for a lot of money, even throughout the region. And there is a risk that the child after irradiation simply will not have immunity to survive. Immunity is just raised by donor platelets"he said.

Head of the All-Ukrainian Youth Organization "Association of Young Donors of Ukraine" and the creator of the social project for recruiting blood donors DonorUA Irina Slavinskaya joined the association in 2012.

"Before that, I did not know that it was possible to be a donor, that it was useful and important. And only after I saw how many people need help, she immediately began to donate blood. And the problem is not that there are no donors. The problem is much deeper. No one knows what donation is, how to become a donor."she says.

The donor and volunteer Valentin Desyatnik the year before last created a social organization with colleagues "Holy home", whose goal is to assist the state in creating a modern blood service.

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"For half a year we were very active, hoping that our help to the state was necessary. It turned out that we were wrong – the system became numb in the position of an apathetic, non-initiating victim. Therefore, remaining in the donor theme, we change tactics. Regardless of the willingness of officials to cooperate with volunteers, Ukraine needs fresh blood. And I’m not just about donating now."said the activist.

According to Artyom Soroki, a 26-year-old digital specialist, for the first time it was just out of curiosity.

"I wanted to see the process from the inside. There was also a desire to check whether the state of health allows being a donor. And at the same time there was an opportunity to determine one’s blood type. By the way, stable blood donation is one of the ways to have a stable check with a doctor, because before each donation you get blood for tests. If for the first time I became a donor out of curiosity, then further it was a deliberate step. When you first enter the hospital, where you see innocent little children suffering from serious illnesses, you realize that blood donation is the minimum that everyone should at least try."- he says.

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