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Thank you, Sudbury mining community!

Sudbury mining community stepping up to save lives at Sudbury’s new Canadian Blood Services plasma donor centre with the Mining For Life campaign
SUD Spotlight image Canadian Blood Services_March 2021
Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer of Vale's North Atlantic Operations and Nick Larochelle, President of USW Local 6500 (Supplied photo)

Throughout the month of March, mining companies, affiliates, suppliers, customers, contractors anyone involved in the mining industry are coming together and challenging each other to save lives through plasma donation with the Mining For Life campaign.

For this first annual edition, the Sudbury mining community is partnering with Canadian Blood services to raise awareness about plasma donation. Over 2,000 donations are needed for the month of March and with this initiative they are looking to schedule 1500 appointments to help reach this goal. So far, seven organizations have stepped up to encourage their employees, and partners to join their team and donate plasma. 

Sudburians have always stepped up to help hospital patients by supporting Canadian Blood Services. In 2020, Canadian Blood Services began collecting plasma in Sudbury, calling on the community to help meet a growing need by donating plasma for patient care. 

A single plasma donation can make a lifesaving difference to someone in need.

Imagine the impact the mining industry in Sudbury can have when you pledge as a team to donate plasma. When your organization partners with Canadian Blood Services, you are doing more than just committing to raise awareness and recruit new donors. Their Partners for Life program offers local organizations the opportunity to give meaningfully and accomplish team goals while inspiring others to donate.  

Local leaders from the proud Partners for Life program, Vale and the United Steelworkers Local 6500, let their members, employees, customers, partners and stakeholders know about their commitment to building a stronger and healthier community through the mining for life campaign. “USW Local 6500 is proud to be working with Canadian Blood Services and Vale to bring awareness to the need for plasma donations here in Sudbury. Every donation has a positive impact on the lives of so many recipients, become a donor during the month of March and together, we will make this campaign a huge success.” Nick Larochelle President of USW Local 6500.  

"Donating plasma is critically important to our healthcare system," said Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer of Vale's North Atlantic Operations. "I encourage everyone in Sudbury to donate and support our community's long-standing support for Canadian Blood Services."

Each plasma donation will be counted and the team that contributed the most plasma donations will be rewarded with an inaugural, engraved plaque. This plaque will make for fun bragging rights, but more importantly, represents the many lives that are able to be saved working together as a team.

The plaque will be circulated year after year to the winning team.  

Plasma is the protein-rich liquid in blood that helps other blood components circulate throughout our bodies. Depending on how plasma is collected and processed, it can be transfused directly into patients or used to manufacture specialized medicines, called plasma protein products. Thousands of patients in Canada depend on medications made from donated plasma to help treat a variety of rare, life-threatening, chronic, and genetic conditions. 

Shannon Morrison of Northern Ontario understands the need for plasma all too well. Her son, Heydan, has a rare immune deficiency. His body does not make the antibodies it needs to fight off infections. Every three-to-four weeks Heydan receives intravenous immunoglobulin – a medication made from donated plasma. 

“Until it affects you, you don’t think about donating,” Shannon said. “Ever since Heydan started treatment, he’s become a happy, healthy, energetic little boy.” 

The plasma donation process is much like whole blood donation, but differs in that a centrifuge device is used to separate the plasma from the rest of the whole blood components. Only the plasma is collected and the rest of the blood is returned to your body all during the same process.

You do not need a history of blood donation to become a plasma donor. 

The need for plasma is more than four times what is currently donated in Canada today. With your help, we can change that.

Plasma donors are a vital link in Canada’s Lifeline and approximately 130 new plasma donors are needed each month in Sudbury. “We are grateful for the generosity of our Sudbury donors and we know they are ready to carry on our tradition of giving to help meet the plasma needs for Canadian patients,” said Teri-Mai Armstrong, Business Development Manager, Canadian Blood Services and proud Sudburian.

Plasma donor centre staff plan fun events and activities each month and partner with local eateries to give donors even more savoury snack offerings. Since opening, the plasma donor centre has already teamed up with Twiggs for plasma donors to enjoy delicious treats.  

Canadian Blood Services is committed to welcoming donors to its donor centres throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, with additional wellness measures and screening place. The plasma donor centre is located at 900 Lasalle boulevard, Sudbury. Open six days a week, appointments are required and available Tuesday through Friday, 7am to 7:30pm; and Saturday and Sunday from 8am to 2pm. 

Interested donors can learn more and book appointments by visiting, downloading the GiveBlood app on Apple or Android or by calling 1-888-2-DONATE.