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Blood donation tribute for mum

Published: 26 Oct 2011 15:006 comments

A PORT Glasgow girl has launched a touching Facebook campaign asking people to give blood in memory of her late mother.

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Emma Kelly wanted to do something a little different to help remember Rita O'Donnell Kelly, 60, who sadly passed away in August.

So the 26-year-old started a campaign on the social networking site, asking people to go along and give blood in tribute to her mum, who was a committed donor all of her life.

Emma started a page called 'Donate blood in memory of Rita O'Donnell Kelly' and invited friends and family to sign up.

She asked everyone to make a one-off blood donation earlier this month at the Gamble Halls in Gourock and Boglestone Community Centre in Port Glasgow, but the site has became a huge success - attracting members from all over Britain and America.

Emma, who lived in Montrose Avenue before moving to Dundee to study art, said: "I always remember my mum going to give blood when I was younger and she sometimes took me with her.

"I remember getting juice and a biscuit.

"Mum sometimes had a bruised arm from giving blood and I was always asking if it was sore, but she would just say that it didn't hurt and it was important to give blood to help other people.

"She always donated blood before she got ill and I promised her that I would donate in her place when she couldn't do it any longer.

"After she passed away I thought it would be a good idea to also encourage others to do the same, in memory of her."

The two local donation days were both hugely successful, with dozens of Emma's friends and family members attending to give blood at similar donor days elsewhere.

Emma said: "I highlighted that there was a blood drive at the Boglestone Community Centre in Port Glasgow and lots of people turned up to donate including my old school friends, and my sister and 10-year-old niece for support.

"Lots of people donated in Dundee and Port Glasgow while others who live in Glasgow, London and America have also pledged to support the campaign.

"I want to acknowledge everyone and publicly thank them on behalf of me and my dad William, brother Shaun, sister Lisa and niece Niamh for doing this for my mum.

"I plan to keep using the page to hopefully keep publicising events and keeping the interest up."

Emma's site can be found by searching for 'Donate blood in memory of Rita O'Donnell Kelly' on Facebook.

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