June was the month of World Blood Doner Day and with one in three Australians needing blood or blood products in their lifetime and only one in 30 donating, it is always a good time to give.
Shailer Park resident Jamie Beynon is just one of the three per cent of Aussies that give blood regularly and he started when he was 16 years old.
“I signed up to the school blood drive competition that was going on at the time,” said Jamie.
“I can’t remember what our school did, but it was a lot of fun trying to get more donations than any of the other local schools and I started realising that we were helping others.”
Last month, Jamie gave for the 91st time and said right now he is aiming to reach 100 but wants to make more than 500 in his lifetime.
“If I keep making regular donations, I’ll hit it pretty easily although life can get in the way sometimes.”
When asked what feeling he gets when donating, he laughed, “Other than the slight fatigue, joy, knowing someone can see another day or get better because of people like me. Also, happiness walking up to their snack bar to claim the reward, sausage roll, cheese and flavoured milk is my go-to.
“For me it’s the ability to easily do something for someone else. I’m just another fly on the wall at the end of the day but to be able to help people that need my blood or blood bi-product more than me, that means a lot that I can actually give them that.
“A few years ago, my sister needed to have a blood transfusion and looking back on it I’m glad there’s so many people out there that continuously donate blood. My blood group (B+) is in high demand for plasma donations so I’m glad someone like me can still do something so great for others.”
If you have never donated, the Red Cross can assist to make sure you are eligible to do so and answer any questions about the process.
“I’d say give it a go at least once. Even that one time would be enough to start making a difference. It’s cool to look at your blood going through the machines and being processed too. But really, if you want to really pay it forward, then this is it.”