Oban re­sponds in droves to mum’s ap­peal

The Oban Times - - NEWS - DAVID MCPHEE dm­cphee@oban­times.co.uk

THE PAR­ENTS of a baby who was born 14 weeks pre­ma­turely and un­der­went eight blood trans­fu­sions have spo­ken about Oban’s lat­est blood drive.

The Scot­tish Na­tional Blood Trans­fu­sion Ser­vice came to the Cor­ran Halls in Oban last month for two days.

Jemma Camp­bell, who gave birth to baby Ash­ton in Jan­uary, posted a heart­felt plea on so­cial me­dia ap­peal­ing for Oban­ites to do­nate blood.

Speak­ing af­ter the event had taken place, where peo­ple queued for more than one hour to do­nate, Jemma said: ‘A lit­tle goes such a long way. Ash­ton’s first trans­fu­sion was 30ml, but it was enough to save his life. [It] just brings it home when you know some­one whose life has been saved.

‘I gave it [ blood] be­fore I had Ash­ton, but never re­ally thought too much about how good a thing it is.

‘I was one of the first there on Tues­day at 3.45pm and there were al­ready about 20 peo­ple wait­ing.

‘I had a wee chat with my nurse about Ash­ton’s story and men­tioned that they might be rushed off their feet with new donors – she po­litely laughed, I don’t think she re­alised how many peo­ple would ac­tu­ally come through the doors.

‘[ It] just shows you how heart­felt my son’s story is through­out our com­mu­nity. I just hope ev­ery­one con­tin­ues to go back and do­nate time and time again.’

Jemma is putting any fu­ture tat­toos on hold, un­til she has do­nated eight pints of blood.

Ash­ton’s fa­ther, An­drew Matthews, said: ‘I just thought it was nice to see so many new faces sign­ing up to it. I’ve never wit­nessed the queue so long, right out­side the Cor­ran Halls.

‘Oban nor­mally has an ex­cel­lent turn out any­way, but go­ing by what the nurses were say­ing it was far more than what they were ex­pect­ing.

‘It can be a bit of a thought for some folk who haven’t given blood be­fore as, re­al­is­ti­cally, a pint of blood is ex­tracted from you.

‘Once you re­alise how far your do­na­tion can go, and what dif­fer­ence it can make to peo­ple’s lives, it is more than worth it. The peo­ple of Oban have done them­selves proud again.’

The Scot­tish Na­tional Blood Trans­fu­sion Ser­vice is sched­uled to visit Oban in Oc­to­ber 2017. The ser­vice will be at the Cor­ran Halls on Tues­day, Oc­to­ber 3 and Wed­nes­day Oc­to­ber 4.

Baby Ash­ton with mum Jemma and dad An­drew.

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