You may have seen the recent and upsetting news reports regarding the tragic death of Evan Smith, who at 21 years old, died following admittance to hospital during a sickle cell crisis. He did not receive a vital, life saving blood transfusion that he needed – Evan called 999 from his hospital bed for help before his untimely and unnecessary death. Evan grew up at ECCi and attended our services with his parents Charles and Betty Smith who are ECCi Partners.
Evan’s story is a tragic one, one which left us all deeply saddened by the preventable loss of a young life. And so in response and to ensure patients living with Sickle Cell and other blood disorders are never faced with such a situation again, ‘United by Blood’ – a coalition of organisations, was formed to work together to raise awareness of blood disorders and the urgent need for more Black blood donations. The three organisations include ACLT (African Caribbean Leukaemia Trust), Black Mums Upfront and CellFeForLife and we are working in collaboration with NHS Blood & Transplant.
Next month, on Saturday 19th June (World Sickle Cell Awareness Day) and Sunday 20th June (Father’s Day), United by Blood will be hosting our first joint blood donor drives entitled: United by Blood: Donating in memory of Evan Nathan Smith. This will be the largest blood donor sessions ever organised which encourages Black people to donate on mass.
Below is a full list of the ‘United by Blood’ locations and running times.
19 June – World Sickle Cell Awareness Day
Westfield Shepherd’s Bush Donor Centre, Unit 2096 Westfield Shopping Centre, Ariel Way, London W12 7GF
Westfield Stratford City, London E20 1EH
West End Donor Centre, 26 Margaret Street, W1W 8NB
20 June – (Father’s Day)
Tottenham Hotspur FC Stadium, High Road, N17 0BX
Brixton – Lambeth Town Hall, Brixton Hill, SW2 1RW
If you would like to donate blood in memory of Evan and to support black people living with blood disorders, please contact: 0300 303 2737.
Please feel free to share so that the United by Blood appeal can achieve a good number of donations.
Jackie Pathay | Administrator