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Interview with Irina Pavlenko

UNICONF — is the largest confectionery Holding in the Eastern Europe, it unites 19 Russian factories with 22 thousand of employees. Donor days held in the holding since 2012 as part of the project “Helping Children Is Easy” have already become an integral part of corporate culture. Irina Pavlenko, pr manager and the organizer of donor actions in UNICONF, tells us about their organization.

Please tell us how charity donor actions are organized in the UNICONF.

Our holding is a partner of the Podari zhizn fund and participate in its charity events. As part of the social corporate responsibility programs, assistance to children struggling with cancer is provided, also confectionery for donors is supplied at blood donation points. There are several million rubles transferred to sick children, sweet souvenirs and, of course, donor actions among our projects. The “Helping Children Is Easy” started in 2012 and is carried out jointly with the Podari zhizn charity foundation and the Blood Center of the FMBA Russia. As part of this project, Donor Days are organized in the holding twice a year, in spring and autumn.

How many employees are donors and how many have become since first campaign in 2012?

In November 2019, we held the tenth anniversary donor campaign and summed up. Since 2012, 540 employees of UNICONF have become blood donors and have donated about 243 liters of blood. The number of people, willing to become a donor is increasing, each employee considers its civic duty to help those in need. In the spring of 2017, 53 employees took part in the Donor Days, in November 2018, more than 80 people have already become donors.

How do you inform employees about Donor actions?

We provide information leaflets at the office of the management company and at the factories. In addition, we place promo information on the corporate website and on social networks.

How do you equip a place for donation? How is the donation process organized?

For such events, a donor point is organized in the health center of the Rot Front factory. First, potential donors undergo a medical check-up. They have a blood test to determine the blood group, Rh factor and hemoglobin level. The doctor conducts a medical examination, including measuring blood pressure, pulse rate, weighing and gets the results of a capillary blood analysis. Based on the obtained data, the possibility of performing blood donation is being decided. The first day brings employees at the first-aid post to have tea and communicate. After blood donation, they look forward to photos taken during the campaign and share their impressions with colleagues and loved ones on social networks. We have very few employees whose participation was rejected for medical reasons. And many of my colleagues are very responsibly preparing to participate in the Donor Days: they lead a healthy lifestyle and have a proper diet.

How actively do employees take part in donor events? What is the motivation for them?

The good tradition of charity donation finds a wide response in the hearts of employees. Many of them decided to donate blood for the first time, having learned about these actions and inspired by the example of colleagues. The team has several honorary donors from Moscow who are happy to share their experience with colleagues, planning to take part in the Donor Days for the first time. Such friendly support helps to overcome uncertainty and take the first step in becoming a donor. Experienced colleagues who donate blood several times note that with each action more and more employees of the holding come to the donor point. We also have volunteers who are not only donors. After work, they go to hospitals to play with the children and are ready to mentally support their parents.

And our traditional question: what would you wish to donors and people, who are going to join donor program?

Today, many people are ready to do good things, helping those who need it, but sometimes they are afraid to take the first step. Blood donation and help people in need, especially children, are within the power of every healthy person. Dare! Take the first step and feel how realistically and simply helping those in need, saving someone’s life.

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