Trish Gardiner, Leanne Stacey and Right Action Health and Fitness owner Alec Munn.
Trish Gardiner, Leanne Stacey and Right Action Health and Fitness owner Alec Munn. Mike Knott

Gyms to boost blood supplies

A PUSH for gym members to help the blood bank through a shortage of supply is sure to lend new meaning to the phrase “pumping iron”.

Australian Red Cross Blood Service spokeswoman Belinda Haynes said Bundaberg’s blood bank — like much of Queensland — was short on O and A blood types, and they were encouraging gym staff and members to be at the forefront of a blood drive to push stocks up to higher levels.

“O and A blood types are the most common, which is also why they’re most needed. In particular, we need O-, which is the universal blood type,” she said.

“The reason we decided to encourage gyms to participate in the blood challenge was that they have a lot of fit and healthy people willing to donate, and they also have a fun, competitive nature.”

Right Action Health and Fitness owner Alec Munn, who is a regular blood donor himself, has already dropped off 13 pledges from staff and personal training clients to the blood service after just one day of persuasion, and has thrown the challenge out to other gyms in town to get behind the blood drive.

Mr Munn, 46, was giving blood this week when he found out about the gym challenge, and decided to get involved.

“I’ve got some of my staff and clients to fill out pledges and I’ve given them to the blood bank to get in touch and make an appointment for a donation,” he said.

“Hopefully I’ll get another dozen by the end of next week. We’re only a small club, but that’s a good start.”

Mr Munn said with up to three lives saved with every donation of blood, this was an important cause to support.

“I’ve been giving blood for about eight or nine years, and I encourage all staff and members of Bundaberg gyms to support this challenge and their community,” he said.

When to donate

Blood — 1-7.30pm Mon, Tues; 7.30am-1pm Wed; 9-11am Thurs; 8.30am-12.30pm, 1st Saturday of every month.

Plasma, by appointment only — 7am-noon Mon, Tues; noon-7pm Wed, Thurs; 8-11am, 1st Saturday of every month.

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