John Cunningham


Halifax, N.S.

"The VON clinic in Halifax is in the same building complex as the Canadian Blood Services donor centre. My two favourite health-care agencies are practically side-by-side. It doesn’t get better than that!"

John, a long-time, committed plasma donor, started out donating whole blood as a student back in 1979. Despite having a terrible fear of needles and “shaking like a leaf,” he overcame his anxiety with help from the “very convincing” staff.

That first blood donation was the catalyst for something amazing: fast-forward to the present, and John has now proudly contributed almost 420 units of lifesaving blood, platelets and plasma! “My firm belief is that everyone must do something, whether big or small, to help humanity,” says John.

As a long-time employee of the Bedford Institute of Oceanography, John had the opportunity to give whole blood at many mobile donation events conveniently held at his workplace; however, he insisted on regularly traveling to the local donor centre to fulfill his dedication to the plasma program.

In addition to being a plasma donor, John is also a volunteer with Canadian Blood Services. Recently retired, he hopes to contribute more of his time to donation events and recruitment — and make an even stronger impact on patients’ well-being than ever before. He is also in the process of becoming a volunteer driver for the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON) transportation program.

John Cunningham National Honouring Canada's Lifeline 2019