1. NBSZ Background
The National Blood Service is a non-profit making organisation (CR442/58). In executing its mandate, NBSZ seeks to improve the quality of life of patients in need of blood without any form of discrimination through collecting, processing and distributing safe adequate blood and blood products. NBSZ’s services cover the whole country and this is done through five regional offices in Mutare (for Manicaland Region), Harare (for the three Mashonaland Provinces), Gweru (for Midlands Region), Masvingo (Masvingo Province) and Bulawayo for (Matabeleland North, & South and the Bulawayo Metropolitan provinces). NBSZ has, thus, strategically positioned itself in order to respond effectively and efficiently to people’s needs.
Society today is confronted by numerous and wide ranging issues that have varying impacts at individual and group/society level that include global warming, economic challenges and chronic disease outbreaks, amongst others. As a national bloodbank, at NBSZ, we regard it as our social responsibility to remind ourselves of our role and play our part in addressing such issues.
NBSZ guided by one of its core values i.e. empathy has identified three priority areas for its CSR activities which focus on Environment, Next Generation, and Community. For NBSZ, Empathy as a value translates to our readiness and willingness to give of ourselves with an open heart and mind promoting compassion in the feelings and thoughts of others and use the insights available from this relationship in a constructive manner to assist ourselves and others to grow and mature.
A range of initiatives are conducted through use of locally sought solutions to issues affecting the communities in which we carry out operations in. In addressing issues affecting our community at different levels we have established key partnerships with other key stakeholders to contribute to the development of safe and secure communities that will allow the Zimbabwe blood donation programme to continue benefiting the next generations.
3. Overall Objective
In conducting its operations and service provision, NBSZ fulfils its social responsibilities by initiating and implementing high impact projects that touch emotions of our beneficiaries and project partners thereby contributing to the sustainable development of society as a whole.
4. CSR Management
NBSZ has an established CSR Committee, coordinated by the Coordination department Public Affairs function responsible for the Services’ Corporate Marketing activities to oversee the CSR implementation plans of the whole organisation, and manage progress. Specific departments are assigned responsibility for each project, and the Public Affairs function and assigned departments jointly conduct periodic reviews of progress made in these initiatives.
Kidzcan is a children’s cancer relief organization which amongst its services provides chemotherapy and other related drugs, blood and blood products as well as prosthetics. It also sources and pays for diagnostic services, that is, Diagnostic Imaging and Laboratory tests. NBSZ as an organisation guided by its corporate social responsibility initiative adopted Kidzcan as its charity partner. This saw NBSZ discounting blood user fees up to 50% for all blood and blood products to be used in Kidzcan related cases. Over and above NBSZ does not charge for blood related services that include blood grouping and cross match.
The impact of this initiative meant increased access for Kidzcan and more lives were saved. A decrease in financial burden on the Kidzcan as an organisation and on the parents/guardians of the children. Before the free blood initiative, User fees for blood and blood products were charged for patients in all private health institutions and public health institutions. Whilst blood is donated for free, there is a value chain between its donation and transfusion to the patient, and this value chain costs US$120, an amount that the NBSZ recovers from the user in order to continue operating as a going concern. If it hadn’t for thie initiative Kidzcan could have been burdened by this insurmountable task.
Blood Donor Benefits
- Has at least 10 donations and has made a donation during the last 12 months
- Has ceased to be a donor, for medical reasons, after having made 10 or more donations or,
- Has ceased to be a donor after having made 25 or more donations or
- Is an active blood donor under 21 years with at least 5 regular donations.
List of beneficiaries
- Donor – provided they meet the required criteria
- Spouse – provided they are legally married
- Children – below the age of 21
- Biological parents
Blood donors who benefited from the policy in 2018 were 43 amounting to $8,325. In 2019, 15 donors have been assisted so far amounting to $15,745.
Cyclone Idai Initiative
Phase one: – NBSZ through the blood donors based in Mutare mobilized resources at the peak of the crisis induced by the cyclone and handed over the donations to the Manicaland Provincial leadership. Amongst the donations were food staffs, clothing and blankets.
Phase two: – after carrying a baseline survey on the needs of the schools affected by the cyclone National Blood Service Zimbabwe managed to mobilize resources and handed over the donations that were mobilised from well-wishers that included corporates, faith-based organisations, the diplomatic community, and individuals who gave out of their free volition. The six schools had varied needs which ranged from text books, exercise books, computer, water tank and sanitary pads.
The third phase is earmarked for November 2019. Current efforts to mobilize more resources are ongoing and various activities are being held which include a charity golf tournament due to be held on the 15th of November 2019. This will see handing over of the second batch of school text books, exercise books and sanitary ware as per the schools’ needs.
Community based campaigns
NBSZ took the 2019 World Blood Donor Day campaign to the community through the World Blood Donor Day awareness clean up and blood donation day that was held on the 10th of May 2019 at Kuwadzana 2 high school which is one of NBSZ blood donation panels. The campaign was open to the public and other organisations who wanted to partner and this saw the local community led by the Kuwadzana School Development Committee taking part in the campaign. NetOne was amongst the corporates who rendered their support for the campaign by also participating. Dr. Maxwell Hove, Director Pathology Services graced the campaign on behalf of Dr. Obadiah Moyo, Minister of Health and Child Care, who commended NBSZ for supporting the 5th of December 2018 Presidential declaration which declared the first Friday of each calendar month as a National Clean-Up Day through the World Blood Donor Day Awareness Community Clean Up.
NBSZ CEO CSR Project
The National Blood Service Zimbabwe has a special budget set aside through the office of the CEO that aims at alleviating desperate cases that are assisted through the CEO’s discretion handled on a case by case basis. In 2018 … cases were handled all cases managed to get assistance. In 2019 … cases have so far been assisted through the facility.
In one of the cases handled was that of Mr Fred who through his consent agreed to share his testimony in appreciation of the help he received. Mr. Fred has a daughter who was diagnosed with Aplastic Anaemia and requires regular blood transfusions. Due to the hash economic environment in Zimbabwe the family could no longer sustain the bills thus they approached NBSZ for help. NBSZ pledged to assist the family with free blood for their daughter’s needs.
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