A total of 84 dedicated blood donors from the south were recognised by NHS Blood and Transplant for their loyalty and commitment to blood donation at an awards ceremony on June 17.
The blood donors, who have helped to save more than 18,900 lives between them, were honoured with crystal awards at the ceremony at the Marriott Hotel, Portsmouth.
Three people from Eastbourne attended the ceremony – Maureen Chester, who has given blood 100 times, Margaret Deadman and Michael Ward – who have both given blood 75 times.
Each blood donation can potentially save the lives of up to three people so if a donor has given blood 75 times they have potentially helped save the lives of up to 225 patients in local hospitals through donating blood.
Out of the four per cent of the eligible population who give blood, only three per cent ever manage to reach 75 donations and just one per cent reach 100.
John Canning, lead donor relations manager for Portsmouth at NHS Blood and Transplant, said, “Some of these donors have been donating blood for over 50 years.
“That really shows how dedicated they are to saving lives.
“While some donors have personal reasons and experiences that will drive them to donate, others do it for no other then reason than to give back to their community and because they think it is the right thing to do.
“I would like to congratulate all our donors on their great achievements and I hope they continue to give blood and spread the word about the benefits of blood donation.”
Anyone wanting to donate for the first time should be aged between 17-65, weighing at least 50 kg (7 stone 12lbs) and in general good health.
If you’ve donated before, you can start again up to your 70th birthday and there is no upper age limit for donors who have donated in the last two years.
To book an appointment call the Donor Line on 0300 123 23 23 or visit www.blood.co.uk