Blood is the ultimate life force that runs through every human, keeping us alive and healthy. Blood and the heart are inextricably linked, as with each heartbeat, blood is pumped through the body. This is vital to our existence, arguably just as vital as love. Blood could be considered as a physical metaphor of unity and love, as it’s shared and common to us all, connecting us as the human family. This connection between blood, the heart and love has seen blood donations coined as ‘liquid love’ as a term to describe the SSSIO Australia (SSSIOA) blood donation drives.
Donating blood is a real act of giving life and love, and its importance is ever so crucial. Patients reliant on blood and plasma donations are often suffering with various cancers, trauma, burns or chronic illnesses. One donation of blood has the capacity to save the lives of three patients.
The Young Adults (YAs) of SSSIOA have been actively promoting and supporting a program of encouraging blood donations from members of the organisation for several years founding its ‘Liquid Love Project’. The relationship between SSSIOA and the Red Cross, Lifeblood Project continues to strengthen over the years through the organisation’s Liquid Love Project being and is recognised as one of its community partners in blood donation. The appreciation of the nursing and medical staff at the Red Cross donation centres has been evident by their kind and grateful comments towards the blood donors who were touched by the thanks and aftercare they received.
For this drive, nine donors rolled up their sleeves to give blood. One YA commented that the ease of donating blood was ‘created by the YAs who organised everything, and Lifeblood who ensured a seamless and calm process.’ Giving blood can be seen as an anxiety-inducing experience for first-time donors who are squeamish or afraid of needles. However, Lifeblood ensures the process is secure through their eligibility testing and pre- and post-care procedures. Donating blood is also a quick nugget of service, as the donation itself only takes ten minutes, and your body restores the donated blood between 24-48 hours.
The value of this selfless service was given by another YA donor, who mentioned that the first time they donated blood they received a text message soon after informing their blood was already being used to save someone’s life. They further commented that, ‘knowing that my donated blood was used straight away made me realise how critical and urgent blood donations are, and that that’s the motivation for continuing to donate blood at least once a year’. It is extremely important that more donors come forward, at least to get tested for donation eligibility, to help reduce waiting times for patients in need.
It really is beautiful that one human’s body contains the liquid love needed for another heart to continue beating. All it takes is one selfless act of service at a time.
“Offer service to someone in need, with a full heart and experience the bliss that results. It need not be something big; it can even be small and unnoticed by others. It has to be done to please the God within you and him.” - Sri Sathya Sai Baba; Seva Dal Conference November – 1981