Blood donors receive awards

THE Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS) held its annual Gold Drop and Porcelain Pelican Awards Ceremony for the North East, midlands region on Sunday, May 26.

THE Irish Blood Transfusion Service (IBTS) held its annual Gold Drop and Porcelain Pelican Awards Ceremony for the North East, midlands region on Sunday, May 26.

One hundred and sixteen 50 time donors received their Gold Drop and seven 100 time donors received their Porcelain Pelicans at the ceremony in the Headfort Arms Hotel in Kells, Co Meath.

John Healy, Area Manager was mc for the ceremony and welcomed everyone and congratulated all the donors on their significant achievements.

Prof Anthony Staines, Chairperson of the Board of the IBTS performed the opening address and started by thanking all the donors present as without donors like them the IBTS would run out of platelets after one week and have no whole blood cells in three weeks.

Prof Staines thanked donors and explained that he had received approximately 100 blood transfusions himself. Sharon Ní Bheoláin presented each donor with their Gold Drop pin

Emma Gilbey, a recipient speaker was delighted when she was asked to share her story. Following complications after the birth of her baby Charlie (now 15 months of age) she recalls the nurses conversations trying to get blood couriered from Dublin for her emergency surgery which lasted four hours during which she lost four litres of blood.

She said that she is “eternally grateful” to the donors who saved her life and remembers them each day. She said she was “humbled to be in the same room with so many heroes”. Emma received a standing ovation at the end of her story.