MANILA – A barangay in Pasig City has partnered with the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) and other non-government organizations (NGOs) to conduct bloodletting activity and augment the dwindling blood supply amid increasing demand from patients suffering from the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
A total 52 blood donors -- including policemen, barangay employees, residents and non-residents -- volunteered and donated during the one-day event held on Saturday at the Barangay San Antonio covered court.
Barangay Chairman Raymond Lising, a member of Junior Chamber International-Ortigas, said the activity was held in Barangay San Antonio since it is known to strictly adhere to minimum health protocols.
The village is also known as disciplined and proactive barangay employing the latest technology such as the AI CCTV (artificial intelligence closed-circuit television) to monitor the compliance of residents with health protocols to curb the spread of coronavirus.
“This is also the first time we partnered with a lot NGOs (non-government organizations), before plainly barangay lang talaga ang nag-i-initiate, ngayon in-open namin na magkaroon ng collaboration with NGOs, kasi nga mas marami tayong nakuhang mga donors, dati pag naka-box lang sa ating kumunidad lamang kulang na kulang, yung sa amin gusto namin i-maximize 'yung programang ito (before it’s was only the barangay involved in such activity and this time we collaborated with NGOs so that we can have more donors – we want to maximize this program)," he said.
This time Barangay San Antonio (BSA) teamed up with JCI-Ortigas, PRC, PRU Life UK, Alpha Phi Omega-La Salle Chapter, and walangmaiiwan.ph. for this “great cause to save people's lives, especially now that there is a blood scarcity due to the ongoing pandemic."
Lising said those who donated will be in the priority list of PRC, saying that when they needed a blood for them or for their family members, they will be prioritized by the humanitarian organization.
"Well of course, doon sa nag-donate may pondo na sila, hindi natin sinabing na mangangailangan sila ng ngayon ng dugo, pero malaking bagay 'yung makapagdonate, nalalagay kasi sila doon sa priority list ng Philippine Red Cross at readily available sa mga nangangailangan din (those who donated, we are not saying they will be needing blood now, but they'll have advantage because they are now on the PRC priority list and readily available)," he said.
Meanwhile, RA Librando, JCI-Ortigas president, said they partnered with BSA after learning from PRC that there is only a minimal percentage of their blood supply left due to the ongoing pandemic, noting that 50 percent of the blood supply in Metro Manila comes from PRC.
JCI is a nonprofit organization of young active citizens age 18 to 40 who are engaged and committed to creating impact in their communities.
"The uncle of one of our members died not due to Covid-19, he died because there is no more blood available to save his life. This became a wake-up call to us that is why we came up with this blood donation drive to save lives," she said.
One of the reasons mentioned by Red Cross for the lack of blood is that people are afraid to go out and donate blood as they are afraid to get infected with Covid-19.
Over 30 bags of blood were collected during the bloodletting activity. (PR)