Defence in Australia's biggest blood challenge
28 February 2012
A blood challenge partnership between the Australian Defence Organisation (ADO) and the Australian Red Cross Blood Service (ARCBS) has produced more than 5,000 donations in the last three years and potentially saved more than 6,000 lives.
The ADO Blood Challenge is Australia’s largest. Navy, Army, Air Force and Defence Australian Public Service (APS) employees compete over a three month period each year to make the highest number of blood donations.
CEO of the Australian Red Cross Blood Service, Jennifer Williams, today presented a perpetual trophy to the Vice Chief of Defence Force, Air Marshal (AIRMSHL) Mark Binskin. This trophy will go to the highest performing arm of the ADO each year.
"Defence members already contribute so much through their service, and it’s great to see our men and women extending that spirit of service in the Red Cross Blood Challenge," AIRMSHL Binskin said.
"These donations save lives in the Australian community and Australian Red Cross Blood products are also used on operations in East Timor and the Solomon Islands."
Ms Williams thanked the Australian Defence Organisation for its involvement in the Challenge.
"In what is truly a win for Australian patients, the combined Australian Defence Organisation personnel made a record 2156 donations across the three months, saving as many as 6400 lives in the process," Ms Williams said.
"The result represents a huge 30 per cent increase in donations compared to the previous year."
In 2011, Army topped the donation count with 767, followed by Air Force with 577, Navy: 424 and Defence civilians: 388.
"I’m really pleased to accept this award today on behalf of the Army members and broader Army family who produced this great win, I’m bloody proud of them,"
Chief of Army, Lieutenant General David Morrison said.
"The ADO Blood Challenge is now in its fourth year and every year the number of donations has increased markedly. For 2012, the challenge for the other Services or APS will be to break the record and beat Army," AIRMSHL Binskin said.
The 2012 ADO Blood Challenge will be launched in August and will run from September to November.
Images of today’s presentations will be available at: http://images.defence.gov.au/fotoweb/
Media contact: Defence Media Operations: 02 6127 1999