Figures show that black people in Redbridge are responding to an urgent need for donors - but more are still needed.

Numbers released to mark the end of Sickle Cell Awareness Month in September show a 30 per cent rise in black blood donors in Redbridge.

But NHS Blood and Transplant says there is still an overall shortage of donors, with 40,000 new donors are needed nationally.

The service says people from the same ethnic background are more likely to have the same blood type, and the shortage of black blood donors makes it harder to find the best matched blood for black patients..

Mike Stredder, director of Blood Donation, said: “This month we can celebrate how more and more black people in Redbridge are saving lives by donating blood.

“However the shortage of black donors remains, which makes it harder to find the best matched blood for black people, putting them at greater risk of potentially life threatening transfusion reactions.

“Blood donation is quick, easy and safe and we urge people of black heritage in Redbridge to register as donors to help save lives.”

Blood donation is vital for many conditions but particularly for sickle cell problems. This is a complaint where the red blood cells of sickle cell patients form into a sickle or crescent moon shape. These deformed cells can block blood vessels, causing agonising pain, and creating a risk of organ damage, stroke or even death.

Mobile donation sessions are held in community venues across the borough such as church halls.

If you feel that you would like to help by donating blood, you can register and book an appointment by calling: 0300 123 23 23, downloading the GiveBloodNHS app, or visiting