We Change lives series

An interview with Joanne Stanley-Jones, Personal Wealth Adviser at Schroders Personal Wealth

  • Emma Pickles
  • 12 June 2022
  • 5 mins reading time

We caught up with Joanne Stanley-Jones, Personal Wealth Adviser, to find out a bit more about her experience giving blood and why she chooses to donate regularly.

Hi Jo, can you tell us when you started donating blood?

I first gave blood when I was 18 and have been donating regularly ever since. I am an ‘Emerald donor’ meaning I have now given blood over 75 times, and I am on track to give my 80th donation this year.

Can you tell us why it is important to you to give blood?

My late dad had a blood transfusion when I was young and it really impacted on me as a child that someone, somewhere had done this for him.

I am also a type O rhesus negative, so my blood is less common and shared by a fairly small percentage of the UK population. It is the universal blood type and very valuable as it can be used in traumas and emergency surgery where the blood type is unknown.

Can you explain what happens when you go to give blood?

It is easy to register and book online at www.blood.co.uk for a local donation. Before each session you are sent confirmation and a safety questionnaire for completion.

On arrival, you are checked in and encouraged to drink a large glass of water. A nurse reviews your completed questionnaire and takes a small blood sample from your finger to check your iron levels are suitable for donating.

They then take you to your chair and hook you up. It just feels like a small scratch on your arm inside of your elbow and most donations take around 10 minutes. A full donation is around 470ml. Afterwards, you are asked not to take any strenuous exercise or alcohol, so maybe donating on a Friday night would not be your first choice! However, you do get to sit for 10 minutes with a drink and a biscuit and chat with other donors.

After every donation, you get a thank you message and a text to say which hospital your blood has been sent to, which makes the donation feel very personal and you really feel that you have changed a life.

Do you have any advice to others who are considering giving blood?

The number of blood donors are falling, particularly amongst younger donors. I would encourage everyone to consider donating on a regular basis. It really is very worthwhile, and you never know who you might be helping or if you or family members may even need a donation yourselves in the future.

I hope this will encourage some of my colleagues to step up and start giving!

You can find out more and register to be a blood donor here.

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