THE NEED for more Asian blood donors from Keighley has been highlighted by the Lord Mayor of Bradford.

Cllr Zafar Ali, who represents Keighley Central ward, spoke to people donating blood when he toured Bradford Blood Donor Centre.

NHS Blood and Transplant needs more South Asian donors from countries such as Bangladesh, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka to better meet the needs of patients living locally.

It is important that donor and patient blood is matched closely to give the patient the best possible clinical outcome

People from South Asian communities are more likely to have some conditions, such as Thalassemia, which means they need regular blood transfusions. Thalassaemia is a group of inherited blood disorders where the haemoglobin in the blood is abnormal.

These patients need regular blood transfusions, for life, to stay alive, and they benefit from donations from blood donors from a similar ethnic background.

Cllr Ali said: “It was an honour to witness the committed work that takes place in the Bradford blood donor centre, and to meet people who have given up their own time to perform this valuable task to help others.

“It is important that more people in the Bradford district put themselves forward to donate blood. Giving blood saves lives, something definitely worth giving up an hour of time for. N

HS Blood and Transplant said that donating for the first time could be daunting, but said the majority of donors felt they had a great experience.

The organisation wants donors to feel cared for and valued when attending a session, so staff aim to make it as comfortable as possible.

A donation appointment takes no more than an hour, and most centres have easy parking nearby. Donors have access to free WiFi, and usually refreshments, snacks and magazines.

Blood donation sessions are regularly held in Keighley and surrounding villages.

People can register, book or amend an appointment online at or on a mobile app. They can also call 0300 123 2323.