The Star (Nairobi)

5 October 2013

Kenya: Record Set As Kenyans Donate 1,500 Pints in a Day

In a period of six days, Kenyans managed to donate 17,240 pints of blood to help the victims of the West gate attacks on September 21. this is according to the Kenya Red Cross.

Speaking at Visa Oshwal Community center where the Hindu Community held peace prayers for the bereaved families and victims of Westgate, the Secretary General Red Cross Kenya Abbas Gullet said that level of blood donations had never happened in Kenya before.

Gullet said what the National Blood Transfusion needed was 1,500 pints of blood. The target was reached on the first day on Sunday September 22 at Kencom and that is why many donors were turned away because blood transfusion services did not have the capacity for storage.

"Due to the generosity and willingness of Kenyans including diplomats from various countries, we were forced to continue with the exercise and as per now the national blood transfusion has enough supplies of blood for emergency needed even after the west gate victims", Gullet said.

He also noted that a total of Sh120million was collected via Mpesa and Airtel funds which will be distributed to five hospitals in Nairobi. "Over 280,000 kenyans contributed Sh72 million, Airtel mobile contributed 2.1 million and the remaining ammount was topped up by Safaricom totaling to Sh120million", he said.

The monies will be handed out to MP Shah Hospital, Aga Khan Hospital, Avenue Hospital, Gurunanak, Nairob Hospital and Mater Hospital.

Gullet said Sh70million will settle hospital bills, 15-20million trauma counseling, offer psycho social support to the direct victims, soldiers and journalists involved in the coverage. The rest will be spent on a blood storage unit at the Kenyatta National Hospital.

Hindu Council chairman Swaran Varma said that it was such a big blow to the community after they lost their beloved five members including 3 students from the Oshwal Accademy who were participating in a cooking competition at the mall at the time of attacks.

Varma urged the government to fast track and put better mechanism in place including seroius reforms in the security organs so as to assure all Kenyans of their security.

He said that they will use this Sundays 4th edition corsage fair to raise funds for the victims and urged the Hindu community the best way to overcome the sorrow is to keep alive the memories of their beloved ones and never allow bad behavior to destroy their inner peace.

Nairobi's county governor Dr. Evans Kidero assured them that the government is coming up with strategic measures to ensure total change in the systems on national security and advised them to try and get to normalcy as soon as possible.

Kidero reiterated that his office has drafted a bill which seeks to have all nairobians register under an association so as to curb the issues of increased insecurity.

"We shall soon have all residents in informal settlements register under the Residence Association if the bill will be debated and approved by the Parliament", he said.

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