Langara students board Lifebus to give back

New initiative aims to appeal to more donors


Reported by Alberto Tufano

Langara students are getting on board with a new initiative to encourage blood donation.

From Oct. 24 until Nov. 16, a shuttle bus operated by Canadian Blood Services will carry eligible students from campus to the Oak Blood Centre.

Express to accessibility

This is the first semester that the shuttle bus is being offered at Langara.

Karen Garcia, a territory manager for Canadian Blood Services, said they hope the bus will make it easier for more students to donate.

“If you donate blood you are not alone,” she said. “There are ten thousand donors every month who support hospital-patients in need in British Columbia.”

Challenges and changes

Despite the large number of donors, there are often shortages.

Trillian Mitchell, a Langara student who boarded the bus on Oct. 25, said “I want to donate now because I understand how difficult it is for hospitals to provide blood for their emergency patients.”

Garcia said that not all students who want to donate blood are eligible.

People who have come to Canada from India or Pakistan, countries where malaria is a huge problem, must wait three years before donating.

Recently, there were several changes to eligibility for blood donors. Garcia said one of them is that the time that people must wait after getting tattoos and piercings has been shortened from six to three months.

Serena Sharma, another Langara student who took advantage of the shuttle bus, said “I am glad that it’s finally so easy to access from Langara. I feel like if you have something that you can give to help other people, why not do it?”

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