Oban responds in droves to mum’s appeal
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.