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June 13-19 marks National Blood Donor week

Each year, during National Blood Donor Week (June 13–19, 2021) and World Blood Donor Day (June 14, 2021), citizens recognize and celebrate the vital role donors play in strengthening Canada’s Lifeline. 

This year marks the 13th anniversary since the parliamentary legislation — introduced by Senator Terry Mercer — was enacted. After more than a year of living with the COVID-19 pandemic, and its profound impacts to every aspect of life, donors from across Canada have continued to honour their commitment to help others. Their generous donations have helped ensure a strong inventory of blood and blood products for patients where and when they needed it.

Canadian Blood Services provides essential products and services for patients in Canada and there are many ways you can support Canadian Blood Services:

  • Donate blood, plasma or platelets: Over 100,000 new donors are needed each year to ensure reliable access to blood and blood products for patients, where and when they need it.

To donate, you must:

  • Be 17 years of age or older.
  • Be in good general health.
  • Carry government-issued ID or a Canadian Blood Services donor card.
  • Meet other eligibility requirements. Learn more at ca/Am-I-Eligible.

Make a one-time or recurring financial donation to Canadian Blood Services, or launch a fundraising event with proceeds in support of Canadian Blood Services charitable Registration no. 870157641RR0001: For those who wish to increase their impact and complement their blood, plasma or platelet donation — or, currently unable to donate blood, plasma or platelets — a financial gift is a meaningful way to help make a lifesaving difference.

Financial donations help patients by strengthening our lifesaving programs and initiatives in five key areas: blood, stem cells, plasma, organs and tissues and research and innovation. For more information, visit give.blood.ca.

  • Join the Canadian Blood Services Stem Cell Registry or, if you’re an expectant mom in Ottawa, Brampton, Edmonton or Vancouver, donate your baby’s umbilical cord blood: Each year, hundreds of patients in Canada with blood diseases and disorders, including cancers, need a stem cell transplant to save their life — many of whom are facing challenges finding a matching donor.

To join the stem cell registry, you must be:

  • Between the age of 17 and 35.
  • In good general health.
  • Free of infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS or hepatitis B and C.
  • Free of health issues including cancer, blood diseases, insulin-dependent diabetes, certain heart conditions, etc.
  • Willing to be a donor to any patient in need.
  • Confirm your eligibility and start your registration at ca/StemCells.

Expectant moms can also help patients in need of a lifesaving stem cell transplant by donating their babies’ cord blood. Canadian Blood Services’ Cord Blood Bank collects and stores cord blood for future use by any patient in need of a stem cell transplant. Donating cord blood is free, easy and poses no risk to mom or baby. Learn more at blood.ca/CordBlood.

  • Register your intent to donate organs and tissues and share your decision with your family: There are approximately 4,400 Canadians waiting for a lifesaving organ transplant with more than 3,000 Canadians on the waiting list for a kidney transplant. Not everyone in need of a vital organ receives a transplant. In fact, on average, 250 Canadians die each year waiting. Learn more and register your intent at ca/Organs-Tissues.

Healthy adults can also be considered for living organ donation. For instance, a healthy person can give (donate) a kidney to someone whose kidneys aren’t working and still live a healthy normal life. This gift is living kidney donation. Learn more about living donation at blood.ca/living-donation

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