Donating life through the bottle
By Gayathri Mani | Published: 04th March 2017 11:20 PM |
NEW DELHI: Life took a u-turn for Manbir Singh Suri and Ramanjeet Suri of Dwarka when they lost their 11-year-old son to blood cancer in 2002.
“He was three when he was detected with cancer. After that, finding a donor and taking our son to hospital for blood transfusion every few days became our routine. But getting donors was not at all easy. And one such unlucky day, he died in need of a donor,” said 59-year-old Manbir, who is a self-employed mechanical engineer.
But they did not let their son’s death weaken them. Instead they started contacting people for blood donation. They have maintained a data bank of possible blood and platelet donors to help those in need.
“We started from our society in Dwarka Sector 23 and made a list of people who were willing to donate blood. As many as 130 families of our society are associated with us and donate blood regularly. Whenever there is requirement of blood, donor are called up for help,” said Ramanjeet.
“There is not enough awareness among people about blood donation. They are afraid that if they donate blood, they will fall ill. Our aim is to free people of this fear,” said Manbir.
In 2015, they formed an organisation, I care, where details of medically fit donors have been stored.
Ramanjeet, 43, a child psychologist, said, “During society functions, we hold awareness campaigns for people. I lost my child, but I don’t want others to lose their loved ones just in need blood.”
They are planning to replicate this project in all 16 societies of Dwarka Sector 23. “We have planned to create an online portal to spread the message and build a bigger donor bank,” she added.
The couple has also tied up with the Association of Neighbourhood Get Together, a social organisation in their area, and many NGOs, including Friends, to make blood donors more accessible to people.