ONGOLE: ‘Donate Blood to Save a life’, is a mission started by the ITI-diploma holder seven years ago and till date, he has saved more than 17,000 lives in Prakasam district. C Ashok Reddy (27), born into a lower middle class family at Nallaguntla village of Komarolu mandal is providing blood to the needy free of cost. As there is no blood bank in Giddalur, those who need blood during emergencies rush either to Nandyal or Markapur towns to get blood and compensate the same by donating blood here. It takes four hours to bring a unit of blood from Nandyal blood bank to Giddalur.
“Eight years ago, my family and I faced a blood scarcity situation during my sister’s delivery. Till then, I knew nothing about blood loss, blood donation, blood banks and importance of blood in saving lives. Local leader I Venkateswar (IV) Reddy came to our rescue then by arranging the required quantity of blood. The incident opened my eyes and I decided to donate blood and promote blood donation activities in the society. I have completed 29 blood donations (on an average four times per year) till date,” Ashok Reddy explains.
Three years ago, with the support of a group of friends, Ashok Reddy started the ‘Memunnam Seva Samithi’. The objective was to extend blood donation to various areas and promote blood donation.
He went to school in Komarolu mandal and completed his ITI-Electrical and diploma courses in Giddalur ITI College. Currently, he is working as an employee in the Electricity department on contract basis and is posted in his native village.
Under the banner of the samithi, Ashok Reddy and his friends conducted many blood donation awareness classes, camps and rallies in Racherla, Komarolu, Cumbham, Besthavaripeta and Giddalur mandal limits, degree colleges and other institutions. They have conducted 10 to 15 public-student rallies, 50 student awareness classes before the activity came to a halt during Covid-19.
His friends A Ramakrishna Reddy (28) a photo studio owner, Venkatesh Yadav (27), a private finance company employee and a few others also actively participated in ‘Memunnam Seva Samithi’ activities. Three more friends Chenna Rao from Ongole, Srikanth from Guntur and Harsha Kumar from Nandyal extended a helping hand by rushing blood to the patients in emergencies.’
Ashok Reddy created many WhatsApp groups—Blood Donors, Save Life, Rakthadaanam Cheyyandi. Through these WhatsApp groups and social media, he calls upon his friends to donate blood to the needy wherever they are. He receives calls for blood from Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Vijayawada, Nandyal, Ongole, Guntur and Markapur among others. Ashok Reddy says, “Till date we have not taken a single rupee from anybody. We want to save lives by donating blood and we will continue to do so in the future.”
AWAKENING PEOPLE TO A VIRTUOUS DEED
Ashok Reddy and his friends conducted many blood donation awareness classes, camps and rallies in Racherla, Komarolu, Cumbham, Besthavaripeta and Giddalur mandal limits, degree colleges and other institutions. They have conducted 10 to 15 public-student rallies, 50 student awareness classes before the activity came to a halt during Covid-19