The highest blood donor in the world one Arjun Prasad Mainali will be visiting Kenya on 10th of September 2019.
Mainali who is a citizen of the United States of America and a native of Nepal has donated blood for 171 times and has reached millions of people globally with blood donation messages in his numerous crusades and blood donation campaigns.
Out of the 171 donations he has made, 122 of them were whole blood while 49 were platelets concentrates. He has been donating blood for the last 32 years. Cumulatively Mr. Mainali has donated a total of 85.5 liters of whole blood and platelets combined. Going by the World Health Organization (WHO) standards of one unit of blood saving 3 lives, he has saved the lives of 513 people.
The award winning donor has been awarded Leo of the Year Award, Presidential Volunteer Service Award, Certificate of Special Congressional Recognition, Leader of the Year from Nepalese Association in Southeast America among others.
In receiving this global leader, the Kenya National Blood Transfusion, Tissue and Human Organ Transplant Service will conduct a weeklong blood drive from 9th to 13th September at the Kenya National Archives grounds in Nairobi CBD. Mr Mainali and our highest male and female blood donors Alpha Kennedy Sanya and Aisha Dafalla respectively are expected to donate blood on the 11th September 2019 at 11.00am at the venue.
The activity that is expected to be graced by high profile government and corporate leaders will serve as a platform for education, advocacy, promotion and awareness creation among the Kenyan public on the importance of blood donation.
It’s Wednesday afternoon and members of staff at Nairobi RBTC have moved to the gazebo area to have lunch as they catch up on each other’s welfare. A few minutes into lunch, a donor is received at the reception desk and escorted to the donor clinic. This donor is unlike any other donor the facility has received since the start of the year- its 64-year-old Mzee Richard Kang’ethe; a committed and selfless donor who has made it his ritual to visit the blood bank any time he’s in Nairobi. So, who is Richard Kang’ethe?
Mr. Kang’ethe is a farmer by profession and resides in his farm house in Ol Kalou, Nyandarua county. He became a regular blood donor after he made his first donation in 1972 while studying at Pumwani Secondary school. Today was Richard’s final donation as he turns 65 in a month’s time. He talks to me about how his interest in donating blood peaked after a visit to his school by a team of blood donation workers. “The idea of donating blood for others was still at its infancy stages in the country as most people were not well aware of the practice. But ever since my first donation, I’ve adhered to making at least two donations in a year!” He says as he keenly fills his consent form. Richard’s selfless commitment to saving lives has turned him into a frequent visitor at the blood bank, journeying between Nairobi and Nakuru RBTCs to give his life-saving unit of blood. This explains the fervor with which he was received with by the staff at Nairobi RBTC as soon as he walked in.
‘We were wondering where you have been, it’s been a while since we last saw you!’ One of the nurses says as she watches Mr Kang’ethe filling his consent form. It is then that he discloses that he was in Nairobi to study for his accounting exams at the American Embassy library; a revelation that takes us all by surprise after understanding just how serious he is about educating himself further, even at his age.
He finishes filling his donor consent form and I escort him into the donor clinic where I leave him for a one-on-one conversation with the nurse. He soon walks out to the donation area after getting the go-ahead to donate. I’m amazed by his altruistic character even as we digressed into talking about the delayed rains and how that has affected his farming activities. I ask him what keeps him motivated to give blood; his response was quite simple and profound at the same time: “Saving lives is a noble course. It’s our brothers and sisters who need this blood, so why not give if you can?”
He fills up his blood bag in a surprisingly short time after which he is served with his refreshments and a branded key-chain. Other members of staff walk in to bid him farewell and to thank him for the years he has been a selfless life saver.
Every donor plays a critical role in ensuring that our country becomes blood sufficient, without voluntary donations, we cannot meet the demands from hospitals. Every donation makes a real difference and it is only by joining hands that we can be able to save even more lives together. Blood donors are lifesavers.
At first glance, Rose Atieno Auma could pass as your ordinary middle class girl in Mombasa city.
The untold story is that her life depends on blood transfusion. “In the month of February 2019, I was transfused 10 units of blood following a serious health crisis; I was hospitalized for 2 weeks, five days, until I came back to life”.
The 45 year old lady says she was diagnosed with sickle cell anemia when she was 5 years of age. Her parents struggled with her. Her basic education was very disruptive and it was only by chance that she was able to complete her primary school education. “I did not go beyond go beyond class 8. Besides I did not perform well because most of the time I was out of school due to my condition”, Rose quips.
She says her condition makes her feel tired; “walking just a few meters at times is like climbing a mountain”.
For a long time she was treated for anemia, which was a serious misdiagnosis. The sickle cell disease was discovered much later.
She started complaining of joint pains and painful ribs. “At that point I was being transfused 2-3 units of blood regularly, amazingly once I got transfused I would immediately come back to life” she further explains to the writer.
She says when her hemoglobin is low her skin color turns into pale, her eyes also turn yellow, her appetite hits rock-bottom. “I behave like a pregnant woman with constant temper flare ups and mood swings”.
She says the unfortunate thing is that quite a few people in the coastal region understand what sickle cell disease is.
“I get sickle cell crisis every 2 to 3 months, normally it happens when my hemoglobin level gets to 4. This has made me completely rely on blood transfusion; I am transfused every 2 months”, she noted.
She says this condition is very expensive to treat saying the government should consider providing subsidies to sickle cell patients through the National Health Insurance.
“The last time I was admitted at MEWA community hospital in Majengo Mombasa, I paid a bill of Ksh. 300,000”, Rose says.
Before she knew about the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service she used to look for blood donors to donate for her. “Getting a blood donor is like hell because people do not like to be tested”, says the single lady.
She later started mobilizing blood donors from her neighborhood, including friends and other volunteers, to donate blood for her.
“The day I learnt of the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service was a game changer for me. The organization has been so good, they have been so helpful”. She says she can now get her A+ blood type on a regular basis.
She has since gained membership of various support groups namely Sickle Cell Warriors, Even Flo Africa, West Kenya SCD and Mombasa Sickle Cell Warriors.
Rose says her condition has kept men away from her. “My one time boyfriend bolted due to health expenses” she says. “Most of the sickle cell warriors are single and at times communities shun them”
“If you get one man to live with you, he must be an angel”, quips the lady who works as a boutique attendant in Mombasa city.
Rose says her message to blood donors is that everyone should donate blood because people are suffering. “Do not wait until you are threatened by circumstances or when your relative needs blood to donate; do it now to save a life.” she says.
The Kenya National Blood Transfusion Service acting Director Dr. Josephine Githaiga receives the Barclays Bank of Kenya Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) representative Ms. Antoninah Moturi at KNBTS headquarters, Nairobi today. Barclays Bank of Kenya in collaboration with KNBTS will embark on a month-long blood donation campaign in over 30 BBK Branches in the country. The campaign that is expected to loop in staff, customers and members of the public is expected to garner over 1,000 units of blood before mid May 2018. #IkoDamuKe
My name is Asha M. Dafalla, A wife and a mother of three children. I am a community worker at Lavie Foundation, Nairobi. I first donated blood in 1981 when I was in Form 3, I lost consciousness after the blood donation and this kept me away from donating blood again until 1986. My friend and colleague back then, Madam Leah, requested me to accompany her to Mater hospital to donate blood for her brother who had been involved in an accident. My second donation experience was good and it opened my eyes on the importance of blood donation. I have been donating blood regularly since then, starting with once a year, twice and now am at three times a year. I have taken regular breaks when I am expectant and during breastfeeding periods. Donating blood makes me feel good knowing that I have saved lives with a priceless commodity, it gives me great satisfaction.
I got enrolled to the Text for Life platform which reminds me through text messages to my phone when I am due for the next donation. I also feel appreciated and encouraged when I receive a “Thankyou” message thanking me after donation. “Happy birthday” messages makes me more elated.
My husband has now appreciated the importance of donating blood and now accompanies me for the blood donation sessions and he has since become a regular donor. My 21 years old son has since become a regular blood donor since when he attained the age of 19. I have learnt that one needs to be healthy to ensure the safety of his or her blood. I have so far donated 53 times.
I donate blood to give back to my community. I would urge all, men and women to ask themselves, “What did I do for my community”?
Your Excellency, the first lady, MARGARET KENYATTA, the cabinet secretary ministry of health,
distinguished guests and all protocol observed, before you is Tabitha Muthoni.
I am 27years old. During my first pregnancy, I faced challenges and complications and I was transfused 12
units of blood before delivery. Having blood group O Negative was a challenge bearing in mind it’s a rare
blood group type. I was admitted at Kijabe Hospital. I thank the donors who donated blood and through the
help of National Blood Transfusion Services, I was able to get blood and had a successful delivery to a
baby boy prematurely at 7months.
The same case applied to my second born where this time it was more challenging because I could not carry
the unborn baby for 9months due to low Hemoglobin level. I was admitted at Kijabe Hospital and had to
go for an emergency caesarean section where the boy was delivered at 5months weighing 800gms. For this
time was transfused 25units of blood as my son was also transfused. I thank the almighty for having saved
I take this opportunity that God has given me to thank all blood donors and let them know that by donating
blood you save a lot of lives. My special appeal is to all those who have blood group O Negative and are
medically fit to come out and donate blood to save a mother and to save a life.
I thank the Kenya National Blood Transfusion Services through the director Dr. MARGARET ODUOR for
their tireless efforts knowing that this facility have donated more than 100units of blood to me. They serve
all equally and friendly to a point that they travel many miles to get blood for the needy to save lives. Their
staffs under the Director of Nakuru Regional Blood Transfusion Center Mr. NICK KIPTANUI are kind
and aggressive as they carry out their duties to help save lives.
I appeal to the government and all relevant authority to put more effort and resources and add more facilities
to all donation centers so as to make their work easier in saving lives. Without blood there would be no life.
I appeal to the government and all relevant authority to put more effort and resources and add more facilities
to all blood donation centers so as to make their work easier in saving lives. Without blood there would be
Lastly I thank my mother for being so supportive for the many years I have been anaemic. I also thank My
husband for being there for me at all times.
My two sons, you are my strength. God bless Kenya and all donors.
As for today my Hemoglobin level stands at 7.0gms. Still we need you donors.
Your excellency the first lady MARGARET KENYATTA I take this chance on behalf of all mothers to
thank you for your tireless efforts to see that we live and get appreciated in the society as a mother who has
gone through disease challenges and the challenges ended with many transfusions.