Gemma Raeburn-Baynes

In 2020, Héma–Quebec, a strategic partner of the Quebec health system, is embarking on a marketing campaign to recruit 1,000 new blood donors from the Black community.
A special visit to the facilities of Héma-Quebec was recently organized for members of Montreal’s Black community organizations to learn about the mission of Héma-Quebec, which meets the needs of the Quebec population for blood and other biological products of human origin.
Nurse Naderge Ceneston, Héma-Quebec’s Cultural Community Development Councilor, was instrumental in getting together about 15 Black organizations to explore the facilities including the laboratories where the donors’ blood is processed for hospitals and to learn more about the mission of Héma-Quebec and the impact on the community. Mr. Delano George, a blood recipient with sickle cell anemia, was on hand to give his testimony to the group.
Each year, Héma-Quebec provides blood products on a recurring basis to 202 people with sickle cell anemia, a disease that mainly affects people in the Black community.
One of the treatments for this disease requires a great deal of blood. On average every year 130 blood donors will be needed by one person with sickle cell anemia for a red blood cell exchange treatment.
Engaging donors from the Black community is extremely important as it has been proven that having a donor and a recipient with similar genetic background makes a big difference.
With thousands of employees and volunteers, Héma-Quebec is doing some amazing work ensuring that the community can have access to several biological products such as blood, plasma, human tissues, stem cells and mother’s milk.
Members of the community are encouraged to be donors with Héma-Quebec to give blood and eventually to save lives.
Check the Hema-Quebec website https://changinglives.hema-quebec.qc.ca/en for information on when and where you can participate. Spread the word on your social networks and invite donors from the Black community to participate.
HEMA-QUEBEC will be hosting a blood drive on February 15 from 10:30 am to 4:00 pm at Centre CEDA, 2515 Delisle St., and the community is encouraged to come out and support.