City Mayor Sherwin Gatchalian and Philippine Red Cross Governor led Valenzuelanos from various groups in donating their blood for humanitarian cause during the annual Red Cross Bloodletting Activity last Saturday, April 6.
The donors included Valenzuela Police Station officers, city government employees, students from the Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Valenzuela and the Valenzuela Polytechnic University, as well as Red Cross Valenzuela City Chapter volunteers themselves.
A total of 65 bags of blood were collected by the Red Cross after the four-hour event - from eight in the morning until noon - held at the Multipurpose Hall of the New City Hall in Karuhatan.
The activity is being done since 2004, in time for Mayor Win’s birthday in April. Mayor WIN himself is also the honorary chairman of Red Cross Valenzuela Chapter.
A qualified donor should be at least 18 years old and not more than 60 years old. Sixteen and seventeen year olds would be allowed to donate only if done with parental consent.
Also, a donor should weigh not less than 50 kilograms. The donor should also pass the physical examination held during the bloodletting activity.
PLV student Genevieve Reago, 19, has been donating blood since she was 17. She donates not only for the humanitarian reason but for the health benefits of bloodletting, as well. “You not only get to help people who need blood transfusion, you also feel better afterwards,” she said.
Besides getting a physical examination and blood screening, donors also reap the benefit of a “change-oil mechanism,” said Red Cross medical technologist Carmela Guanzon. “Bloodletting triggers the bone marrow to produce new blood cells that would replace the ones you lost,” she said.
Also held during the event was the turn-over ceremony for the disaster response vehicle donated by the Rotary Club International to Red Cross Valenzuela City Chapter. The vehicle, an eight-foot-high truck, would serve as a mobile clinic, a cargo truck for transporting relief goods, as well as a command center during operations in remote, disaster-stricken places.
“The truck can also make its way around places with knee-high flood, which makes it an ideal vehicle for transporting evacuees during typhoons,” said Director for Disaster Management of Red Cross Valenzuela City Chapter, Martin Lim.
Mayor Win was also awarded plaques of appreciation by the Red Cross Valenzuela and the Boy Scouts of the Philippines Valenzuela City Council.
Present during the bloodletting were Philippine Red Cross Secretary General Gwendolyn Pang, City Health Officer, Dr. Jaime Exconde, Red Cross Valenzuela Chairman Elizabeth Chongco and Rotary Club of Valenzuela President Rob Nelson.