If you don’t know what to get your mum for Mother’s Day (which is a week way, in case you forgot), Moonpig is asking people to register as a blood donors.
The card brand has teamed up with NHS Blood and Transplant to encourage fathers and adult sons to donate blood in honour of their mothers and partners this Mother’s Day.
Of course, daughters can take part too but they want to raise awareness of the need for more men to donate.
Around 4,000 women a year suffer severe bleeds at childbirth, with the majority needing blood transfusions.
Around one in five women suffer a bleed during childbirth, with about 1% suffering a severe post birth bleed.
Around 6% of donated blood is given to mothers during childbirth – around 50,000 units a year.
It’s important that men donate as women are unable to for at least six months after birth and men’s blood is used almost exclusively for complete blood transfusions on babies and for transfusions in the womb.
But last year, only 41% of new donors were men. The NHS needs 400 new donors every day to keep a strong donor base and maintain 5,000 donations every day.
The 10 cards feature include some to be given by dads, such as: ‘To celebrate you on Mother’s Day, I’ve decided I’m going to lie down with a nice cuppa…, and others to be gifted by the child, including ‘Mummy you’re bloody brilliant (sorry for swearing)’.
Two of the cards are designed by the children of women who were saved by blood transfusions.
Kirsty Armstrong suffered a large bleed during the birth of her third child – her own life was subsequently saved by 20 units of blood.
In light of this, her 12-year-old daughter has designed a card showing a blood bag entitled ‘We love you’.
Kirsty said: ‘I am incredibly grateful to all blood donors for their generosity, as without them I wouldn’t be here.
‘My experience has encouraged my family and friends to donate and I am passionate about spreading the word to others. Being part of this initiative will hopefully go some way towards getting more people donating.’
Laura Scott experienced a severe bleed whilst giving birth to her son Henry at 30 weeks, she then had blood transfusions totalling 22 units.
For his card, Henry drew a heart alongside the words ‘Mummy, I give you my heart. Daddy gives blood. Because we love you!’.
Laura said: ‘I’m so lucky to be alive. Donating blood may not seem much, only being an hour of your time and enjoying a cuppa and a biscuit afterwards, but it honestly couldn’t be a bigger deal. You save lives.
‘Since my transfusion, my partner is now a regular blood donor and so I hope my story can encourage others to be one too.’
The women involved in the campaign also chose to help Mind.
10% of card sales will be donated to the charity as they specialise in post birth trauma counselling, and provide advice and support to combat pre and post-natal depression.
Dale Boreham, Design & Publishing Manager at Moonpig said: ‘The ten cards in this exclusive range have a light-hearted twist on a serious topic and were designed to appeal to regular donors as well as the wider public wishing to celebrate the amazing Mums they know.’
Tom Aggett, Lead for Male Blood Donor Recruitment at NHS Blood and Transplant, said: ‘Registering as a new donor may not seem like a traditional Mother’s Day gift but it really is something meaningful you can do to celebrate mums and save lives.
‘Giving blood is amazing and so we hope the cards will encourage more fathers to save lives by signing up to donate.’