A proud Yorkshire man has played a key role in educating the Asian community about registering to give blood and made a massive impact on national figures.
Since becoming the first UK project manager for Sewa Day last October, Harkishan Mistry has worked tirelessly along with other volunteers to get 300 new Asian’s donors registered this year.
He has been set with a challenge of getting that figure up to 1500 new donors by next April.
Harkishan is currently working with the NHS to get a list of 12 new venues risk assessed so they can be used for blood donation.
As he explains the trouble is getting people to attend donor centres: “People are quiet reluctant to go, but if they were able to register at a temple it would be more accessible.
“Once you get people through the door and registered on the donor list they can be chased up.”
He has been part of the Sewa Day since 2010 which has various projects with schools, community groups, councillors, and homeless groups.
The aim is to encourage individuals, voluntary groups, schools, and companies to commit their time to doing a good deed with an aim of making a positive difference to someone else’s happiness be carried on the day building.
In the ancient Indian language of Sanskrit, Sewa means selfless service. Sewa is a universal concept, which involves performing an act of kindness without expectation of reward.
Although called ‘Sewa Day’ it isn’t just about one day, it’s about imbibing the values of ‘Sewa’ in to your life to serve others selflessly.
As it is so easy to sign to be a donor Harkishan hope more people will continue to do so: “You ring the 0300 number or go online and register answer a few simple questions then book an appointment and fill out a health and safety form.
“If everything is alright and the doctor gives you the ok then you give 20 minutes of your time to give blood.
“It is simple and quick and a much needed in our community.”
Since the age of 21 Harkishan has been a voluntary leader for Hindu Swayamsevak Sangh, and has been responsible for organising a range of cultural and physical activities for weekly meetings of the Bradford Branch.
For the last ten years Harkishan has run the Govindbhai Foundation a family-run registered charity that hosts annual events raising over £144,000 to support disadvantaged children in the UK and India.
To sign up and donate blood you can either ring 0300 123 23 23 or register online at: https://www.blood.co.uk/the-donation-process/registering-online/