This Chennai college includes blood donation drives in its academic calendar 

From relaxing attendance rules to offering extra credits, Guru Nanak College has come up with various incentives for its students to donate blood

November 12, 2022 11:07 pm | Updated 11:16 pm IST

A venue at Guru Nanak College for the recent drive

A venue at Guru Nanak College for the recent drive

The staff and students of Guru Nanak College in Velachery have made a habit of donating blood. Twice a year – usually during the semester break in April and November – the management organises a mega blood donation drive on the campus. Every time this happens, a new group of donors are added to its database.

On November 10, the second such drive of the year took place with representatives of all major government blood banks parking themselves on the campus.

The auditorium and another hall above the canteen turned into a mini-ward with para-medical staff setting up the various paraphernalia that go with blood donation.

D Ranjith Kumar, assistant professor and head, Department of BCom Corporate Secretaryship and NCC Officer – Airwing, Guru Nanak College, says 1009 units of blood was collected from the day-long drive.

This number is hardly surprising as in the previous years too, students had turned out in good numbers to support the cause.

In 2018-19, 1019 units was collected from one drive. The highest collection so far is from the drive held in 2021-22, where 1214 units was collected. During the two years of the pandemic, student donors were sent to hospitals to donate blood.

P Nedumaran, NSS programme officer of the college, says they expected the number of units to surpass those from the previous editions, but the monsoon and the semi-final of ICC Men’s T20 World Cup between Indian and England together played spoilsport.

“But we had close to 50 NSS alumni coming forward to donate blood,” he says.

Over the years, the college has adopted various measures to motivate youngsters to donate blood. NSS and NCC students of the college deserve much of the credit for leading these drive.

“Before a drive, announcements about it are made in the assembly. Class representatives are sent to nudge students to donate blood. Reminders are sent via WhatsApp groups; and promo videos are created,” says Nedumaran.

Ranjith says those who have a shortage of attendance are given three days for every unit of blood donated by them. Two credits are awarded for such volunteering activities at the end of every semester, which include donating blood or taking part in any support service activity like sports, NSS, YRC and consumer club.

The drive is always conducted on a working day to draw in a good number of students to the venue. “We have more than 7000 students in the college. A majority of the first-year students are not eligible for blood donation and many women are unable to go ahead with the blood donation due to low haemoglobin count, but we do our best to create a culture of blood donation on the campus,” says the NCC Officer. He says the college has also won two awards for its initiatives towards blood donation.

Apart from the annual drives on the campus, students are sent whenever an emergency request for blood is received. We maintain a database of students and their blood group, and depending on the requirement, we send them, say the faculty.

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