TMPD and SAPS officers give gift of life on Valentine’s Day

Tshwane Metro Police Department Chief Yolande Faro, celebrates Valentine’s Day by donating blood at Sammy Marks Square in Pretoria. Photograph: Jacques Naude

Tshwane Metro Police Department Chief Yolande Faro, celebrates Valentine’s Day by donating blood at Sammy Marks Square in Pretoria. Photograph: Jacques Naude

Published Feb 14, 2024


Over and above their unwavering commitment to serve and protect communities in and around the City of Tshwane, law enforcement officers in the city opted to give the gift of love and life to the country by donating life-saving blood.

Clad in their uniforms, members of the Tshwane Metro Police Department (TMPD), alongside the SAPS from Sunnyside as well as officers from Emergency Services, walked through the Pretoria city centre from Church Square to Sammy Marks Square proudly marching to the local blood donation services.

Members of the police’s brass brand serenaded onlookers in the city before braving the needle to donate blood in honour of Valentine’s Day.

Yolande Faro, TMPD chief, said with Easter season fast approaching they had opted to donate blood as this was a dire need given the carnage on the roads, including officers injured while on duty, as well as victims of crime.

Faro said it was for this reason that they had decided that instead of giving away red roses, to rather donate blood for victims of crime and road users who may need it.

Law enforcement agencies in Tshwane hold peaceful march to local blood donation offices to donate blood for Valentine’s Day. Photograph: Supplied

“We want to spread our love by giving life. You can give flowers and in a day or two they are dead, but blood gives life”

“We wanted to challenge other law enforcement agencies and emergency services members within South Africa to do the same, so that at least by Easter and beyond, there is enough blood for the rest of our people.”

Sunnyside Station Commander, Brigadier Matshidiso Kgoadi, said they had opted to join Tshwane Metro Police initiative to donate blood as they too believed in the sanctity of life and wanted to give a helping hand to those at the forefront of acquiring much-needed blood.

“Year in and year out we hear messages from the South African National Blood Services (SANBS) of the shortage of blood they have to contend with. We thought why not take the first step and show our people that we care and want to save lives.”

Virginia Raseroka, SANBS clinic supervisor at Sammy Marks Square, said the need for blood donation was critical as the donations did not only assist with crime or accident victims, but also went to cancer patients and women during delivery.

Raseroka said all that a person required to donate blood was to be at least over 50kg in weight, and at least between the ages of 16 to 75, and lead a safe sexual lifestyle.

“With one pint of blood a donor can save at least three lives. We separate the blood into red cells, plasma, and platelets to help three people.

“We truly appreciate the initiative by law enforcement to champion for people to donate blood because the sad truth is that we really do need blood donations as stocks are extremely low.”

The national blood donation service has reported that less than 1% of South Africans were active blood donors.

A unit of blood only lasted 42 days after donation and, for this reason, it was important for blood donors to donate regularly, or as often as every eight weeks,, it said.

SANBS aims to collect 3 000 units of blood per day to ensure a safe and sufficient blood supply in the healthcare system.

Blood donation is a safe process that only takes 30 minutes.