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An act of love inspires Ally Blood Donor clinics


Canadian Blood Services to host Ally clinics during World Pride

June 25, 2014 (TORONTO) – Canadian Blood Services is hosting an Ally Blood Donor clinic during World Pride activities in Toronto on Friday June 27, 2014 at their College Street location.  Ally blood donor clinics invite people, who are ineligible to donate, to bring an ally to donate blood on their behalf.

A few years ago, Stephen McCarthy decided he wanted to donate blood. He booked an appointment but after doing some research online, he discovered that he wasn’t able to give blood due to a policy that limits the eligibility of men who have sex with men. 

“Finding out that I couldn’t donate was really hard,” said Stephen. “I’ve always wanted to help.” 

After hearing the difficult news, Stephen told his dad Jim that he no longer needed to make the stop at the blood donor clinic that day. His dad could sense his son’s disappointment.
 
“My dad knew how much donating meant to me and he wanted to help, so he volunteered to give blood on my behalf,” said Stephen.

Stephen’s dad wanted to help his son.  “I am proud of my son and his hard work doing HIV-cure research alongside Canadian Blood Services, which is why I am donating to support him,” shared Jim. 

That act of love and support was ultimately the inspiration that led to the creation of Ally Blood Donor clinics.

“We realize that the current five-year policy is not satisfactory to many, “says Dana Devine, Chief Medical and Scientific Officer with Canadian Blood Services.  “We continue to review the impact on safety.”

In the meantime, Canadian Blood Services wants to invite everyone who has been deferred for any reason to consider partnering with an eligible donor and ask them to accompany them to donate on their behalf…like Stephen’s dad.

To book an appointment, download the GiveBlood app, visit blood.ca or call 1 888 2 DONATE (1 888 236 6283) today.

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