A volunteer firefighter who was once in desperate need of donor blood has called on her fellow CFA members across Victoria to roll up their sleeves and take part in the Emergency Services Blood Challenge.
The Challenge, held annually by the Australian Red Cross Lifeblood Service, runs from 1 June to 31 August, and encourages emergency service workers to join their team and donate, competing to win the challenge and more importantly, save lives.
Kylie Vernados is a Firefighter at Bolinda & Monegeetta CFA and required three units of red blood cells after severe anaemia impacted her quality of life.
“It was my only option for treatment,” Kylie said.
“Prior to having the blood transfusion, I was really fatigued, low energy, getting short of breath when I was doing very little strenuous activity, irregular heart rates… it was stopping me from doing a lot of things that I really wanted to do.
“It’s made a big, big difference.”
Kylie said while not everyone is able to donate blood; it’s a great way to help others if you can.
“I’d really encourage everyone who can donate to get out there and do it,” she said.
“There’s a lot of people like myself who can’t donate, and we’re so grateful for those who can.
“You just never know when you or someone you love may need blood products, so if you can do it – please do.”
One in every three Australians will need blood or blood products in their lifetime, however only one in 30 Australians donate blood each year.
You can regiter to donate at donateblood.com.au.