New Zealand Blood Service: Driving the business community to become donors

If you’re looking for a team experience that blends doing good for the community and building a strong team ethos, then joining together to donate to New Zealand Blood Service could be the solution.

New Zealand Blood Service (NZBS) requires 4000 donations every week to meet hospital demand, and with only 4% of the eligible population in New Zealand currently donating blood and plasma, there’s a need to encourage more people to roll up their sleeves.

Every donation of blood and plasma makes a difference, and businesses and organisations throughout New Zealand can contribute to this essential need.

Todd Martelli, Donor Relations Co-Ordinator for the NZBS, says recipients of blood products are very thankful to the donors who spare their time to donate blood and plasma. “You never know when you or someone you love may require blood products. The short time it takes for your team to donate could be a lifetime for someone else.”

25 years of saving lives

This year New Zealand Blood Service marks 25 years of saving or improving more than 540 000 lives since 1998. As Sam Cliffe, CEO, said, donors are the heroes of the NZBS story, and none of what it does would be possible without the selfless generosity of donors.

Business benefits of donating blood as a team

Saving lives feels amazing and gives a sense of pride, but there are additional advantages to giving blood as a group. Businesses supporting their local community can strengthen the organisation’s reputation and generate positive publicity, help attract talent, reduce turnover, and improve the company’s performance and culture.

Groups of three or more who wish to participate can create a Team Red to donate blood, or a Team Gold to donate plasma. The sign-up process is simple, just nominate a Team Captain, and sign-up to arrange your first donation.

Convenient and accessible donation centres

There are several ways that NZBS makes it even easier to fit donating into your working week. These include:

  • Regular blood drives in Papamoa, Mount Maunganui, Tauriko, with evening blood drives at Holy Trinity Church in the CBD and the donor centre on Cameron Road opens early at 7.30am on weekdays with late nights until on 7.30pm on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.
  • The ability to book your own appointment via the website or app. By using the NZBS app you can view an eligibility countdown to see when to book your next appointment, search for a donation location, see open appointments, and record personal details. The app will also send notifications for appointments, urgent appeals for your blood type, and let you know when a blood drive is coming to one of your preferred locations.
  • For groups NZBS can also provide a shuttle service to and from businesses.
  • Free wi-fi so you can bring your laptop and continue to work.

Vertical Horizonz, a Tauranga Business Chamber member, hold regular blood drives for the Tauriko business community.

“The purpose of Vertical Horizonz’s involvement was to encourage those who wouldn’t have time in their busy work life to donate, particularly those in the Tauriko Business Estate,” says Lloyd Rakaupai, Account Manager – BOP. Supporting community initiatives like the NZBS is the backbone of our organisation, and many of our directors, managers, and staff have served our community in some way, shape, or form.”

To date, the Vertical Horizonz Tauranga branch has supported four blood donation initiatives in 2022 /2023, with 100+ donors attending. Feedback is positive, with team members saying it’s more fun participating as a team, it’s less intimidating for those with a fear of needles, and how great it is to be part of an organisation that supports a worthwhile cause.

Looking forward—a new donor centre for Tauranga

Early in 2024, the new Tauranga donor centre will open on the corner of Cameron Road and Hamilton Street, providing the people of the city with even better facilities. The centre will be within easy walking distance of the Tauranga City Centre, the Tauranga campus of the University of Waikato, and have access from major public transport hubs. There will also be improved parking, charging for electric vehicles, additional beds, and the ability for the space to grow to meet future needs.

For more information on how your business or group can become a team of lifesavers contact or visit the NZBlood website. 

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