Meet Arjun Mainali, a US-based Global blood donor

By The Inspirer.

Arjun Prasad Mainali, 51, a global blood donor American citizen, has saved hundreds of human lives worldwide especially in African countries though donating his blood. He is in Rwanda for the purpose of visit and donating blood.

He was Born in Nepal and later emigrated in in the United States, he has donated blood 170 times (whole blood 121 times and platelets 49), it’s about 85,000 milliliters since 1987, the blood that helped to save up to 510 lives.

He started donating blood the first time when he was 19 years old.

Mainali has put tireless efforts in educating, advocating, encouraging, promoting and creating awareness among thousands of people about the importance of blood donation for human civilization.

He has an impressive stand on the need for donating blood, and how much a common person can contribute to it and make a substantial difference. He is a strong believer of humanitarian services and has contributed immensely to establish a society that believes in social responsibility.

What motivated you to start donating blood in Africa?

Many times, I heard that people lost their precious life due to not getting blood on time. I could not tolerate that painful situation. So, I decided to come in Africa and donate blood, and share my blood donation activities and how I made successful blood drive.

How frequently do you donate blood?

Usually, I donate blood 4 times in a year. I donated (9.5 liters) whole blood 6 times and platelets 13 times in the year of 2014, which was exceptional.

What is your goal?

Unite the strength of blood donors form around the world to help maintain the current level of blood donation participants in the developed countries, and encourage blood donors to increase blood donation in the developing countries.

Where do you donated blood?

I have travelled to 15 countries of 6 continents and 14 states of the United States for the sole purpose of donating blood along with local people.

How did you learn to donate blood?

I read a story titled ‘The Blood Donor’ in my college. I was influenced with that story to donate blood.

I have seen, so many time, those relatives were afraid to donate blood as they used to think donating blood makes their body weaker. Seeing this situation, I decided to donate blood for those who are in need.

What is your efforts on blood donation?

Due to my efforts more than 200,000 people are educated on the need and importance of blood donation, 30,000 people came to blood donation programs, and 15,000 of them donated blood.

My aim is to inspire more and more people to donate blood. So, I tried to motivate as many people as I could.

My goal is to save lives of patients through blood donation. I have spent several nights without even blinking my eyes – planning for the next day’s event. I have seen blood donation even in my dreams so many times.

What is your blood donation motivation techniques?

  • I wish every day for my Facebook friends with ‘Greetings! Happy Birthday! Please celebrate your next birthday by doing blood donation.
  • I organize essay writing competition in secondary school on topics of ‘I will donate blood’. I would give them worthy prize.
  • I honored blood donor motivator and initiator with worthy prize from higher official of the country.
  • I printed several thousand copies of brochures with the slogan “Please Donate Blood’ and distributed.
  • I published books about blood donation and distributed two thousand people who I know.
  • I did 31 days long Bi-cycle tour with slogan ‘Please donate blood at least once a year’ across the country to spread awareness among people for donating blood is not harmful on my 16thblood donation on December 5, 1990.
  • I do talk programs on blood donation.
  • To institutionalize blood donation and campaign, I founded blood donors’ organizations; Blood Donors Association Nepal, Blood Donors of America, International Nepalese Blood Donors and World Blood Donor Arjun Mainali Incorporation.

What is your investment on blood donation?

In the last 32 years, I have donated blood. It takes around 7 minutes to donate blood each time. Similarly, it takes around 110 minutes to take platelets in average in this way, I have spent 6,238 minutes to draw my blood and platelets. It means I had to bear the needle, inserted into my veins, for 104 hours. Around 200 blood drives have been taken place with my involvement. I have spent around I thousand hours in blood camps with average 5 hours for one camp. Moreover, I have donated my blood with local donors in 15 countries. I have spent 642 hours in air travel during this period. I have traveled 116,062 miles in total for blood donation.

Is there any wastage of your blood?

Yes! While donating platelets, around 54 milliliters blood of the donor wastage in the bag and pipe. In this calculation, my 2938 milliliter blood was wastage during platelets donation process. I considered myself remembering the fact that I have donated 85 thousand milliliters blood to save 510 people’s lives and the volume of wastage blood is very tiny in comparison to the donated blood. 

Do you have uncomfortable experience?

Of Course! Extracting 500 ml. hundreds from our body through a tiny needle might not be as easy as one thinks. The feeling of ‘saving other’s life with our blood’ makes it possible. The same feeling inspired me to donate blood regularly ignoring small difficulties.

I felt uncomfortable two times while donating platelets and had to stop the process. Once, an unskilled nurse inserted the needle in the wrong place caused an unbearable pain and had to halt the blood donation. 

How are you helping to increase Qualitative Blood Donors?

Blood donation programs are being popular among Nepalese community in the United States. During the starting phase almost, 74 percent of donor used to be a new donor but now around 80 percent of Nepalese blood donors in New York are regular. Around 9 thousand Nepalese people have donated blood in United States since 2008.

Do you have family support for your blood donation?

Yes! My family are big supporter for me. They have supported for my blood donation many times. One of them is on January 1, 2016 nurses at the Blood Bank started taking my platelets. It was my 150th donation in total. My wife was standing beside me holding play card written— “my husband has donated blood 150 times”. And, my children were holding play card written— “my father has donated blood 150 times”. I don’t have to lie to say that very few time my wife argues with me for not giving enough time in home also.

According to Arjun observation, Men have 76 Milliliters per kilogram while women 66 Milliliters.

50 Milliliter per kilogram blood needs in our body to survive. So, we can donate blood 9 Milliliters per kilogram easily,” he said.  

Mainali has spent 5,650 minutes to draw his blood and platelets, which equals to bearing the needle on his arm for 94 hours and 12 minutes. He has spent around 1 thousand 5 hundred hours in blood drive camps with average of 5 hours per camp. Likewise, he is spending at least one hour daily on research, contacting people and motivating them for donating blood.

In total, he has spent about 11 thousand 3 hundred hours in the last 32 years to create awareness on blood donation. He has spent 642 hours on traveling to donate blood. He has been awarding many individual and organizations who have actively helped donate blood.

Last year, 125 million people donated blood globally.

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Elias Hakizimana

Elias Hakizimana, CEO&Founder of The Inspirer Ltd,(www.rwandainspirer.com) is a professional Rwandan Journalist with Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Communication, received from University of Rwanda’s College of Arts and Social Sciences (CASS) in 2014. He served various media houses in Rwanda including Rwanda Broadcasting Agency (RBA) in 2013 and became passionate with English Online and Print Media Publications where he exercised his talent as a Freelance News Reporter for The New Times, The Independent, The Rwanda Focus, Panorama and more before he became a Self-Entrepreneur as the CEO and Founder of The Inspirer Limited in early 2017.

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