A mother of three is advocating for more people to donate blood after her unborn son desperately needed a blood transfusion to save his life. This National Blood Donor Week (10-16 June 2024), Rebecca Davies from Dinas Powys is highlighting the continuous need for blood, without it, her son would not be here today.

Rebecca and husband Geraint were told during a routine appointment there were complications in the pregnancy due to the different blood types between Rebecca and her unborn baby, Nate. Rebecca’s blood began producing antibodies to fight Nate’s blood. Although rare, the disease can be dangerous for the baby.

Nate had to receive a blood transfusion while still in the womb at 28 weeks old. Four weeks later, Nate was delivered prematurely in order to receive a further lifesaving blood transfusion at just one day old whilst in the neonatal intensive care unit at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff.

Beki and baby Nate.

Thankfully, Nate made a full recovery and was home five weeks later. Now aged seven, he is a healthy young boy with no long-term effects from the disease and is enjoying life with his parents and siblings, Kieran and Evie.

Commenting on Nate’s recovery, Rebecca said, “Without these blood transfusions, Nate would not be here with us today. To put it simply, we are a family of five, not four, thanks to the generosity of blood donors. That simple act of kindness has given us the chance to be a family we always dreamed of and for Nate to live a long and happy life.

“To whoever the donors are that Nate received the blood from, we cannot thank you enough.”

Rebecca added, “I would always encourage those who are eligible to donate blood to do so. You’re not only helping the person who receives the donation, but all their loved ones too. We are all so grateful.”

An image of the family.

Alan Prosser, Welsh Blood Service Director, said: “Every day, around 350 donations are needed to help the patients in hospitals across Wales, including the University Hospital of Wales, where Nate received his transfusions.

“As a Service, we rely on the generosity of people living in Wales to provide vital donations to patients, and around 5,000 blood donations each year are used due to childbirth.

“By giving up just one hour of your time, you have a unique opportunity to support patients like Nate who rely on transfusions to survive.

Nate now.

“National Blood Donor Week is an opportunity for blood services across the UK to raise awareness of the lifesaving importance of blood donation and encourage those who have never donated to give it a go, or if that’s not for you, just to talk about blood donation with friends and loved ones.

“Sharing stories like Rebecca and Nate’s highlight the true value of just one blood donation and the difference it makes, not just to the person receiving the transfusion, but also to their family. Thanks to our donors, Rebecca and Geraint can look forward to sharing many more special milestones with Nate, Keiran and Evie together as a family.”

Book a lifesaving donation at welshblood.org.uk or call 0800 252 266 today.