CFA members continue to make important donations

The Emergency Services Blood Challenge is well underway and CFA members continue to make life saving donations.


Gary Wattie making his 90th donation

Over 540 donations have been completed by CFA members saving more than 1600 lives. This is already 150 more donations than where we were last year.

Last week Baranduda firefighter Gary Wattie made his 90th donation.

“I try to go every two weeks to donate plasma. However life, health and work gets in the way sometimes and that’s OK,” Gary said. “You just have to get back on the horse as soon as you can because every donation we give is one they didn’t have before.

“Sometimes there is a shortage of whole blood so the fantastic lifeblood team ask if we can donate whole blood instead.

“This just means instead of donating every two weeks you come back in four weeks.

“I’ve known a lot of close family and friends who have needed blood in their lifetime.

“My mum had a blood transfusion when I was born and my wife lost over two litres of blood when she delivered our third child almost sixteen years ago.

“I had been donating prior to that but after my wife needed so much blood, I was more dedicated to the cause.

“My wife eventually was allowed to donate after receiving her life saving transfusion; she donated quite a few times after that as she understood just how valuable donating blood was.

“A know a number of friends and family who have also either received lifesaving blood transfusions and/or blood products for cancer treatments, etc.”

Gary often donates with his son Cameron who is a firefighter with the Leneva Fire Brigade.

“Officially he is a Leneva Brigade Member but is currently living back at home so turning out with Baranduda also.

“He was a junior member at Kiewa Brigade and transferred to Baranduda as a senior member, he was itching to donate blood as soon as he turned sixteen,” Gary added. “But the rules changed a few months before his birthday, making eighteen the minimum age to donate.

“He is now a regular donor with me.”

To find out more information about donating or to view the Emergency Services Blood Challenge results tally head to the Red Cross website.

It's important that every donor makes their donation count…

1.       Ring 13 14 95 or go online to make a blood donation appointment for between 1 June - 31 August.

2.       Join Lifeblood Team: Country Fire Authority here, or in the donor centre, to ensure your donation is added to the universities tally.

Gary Wattie and Cameron Wattie

Author: Holly Penketh