Maria Paul honored for leading blood donation campaign in Dubai

Maria Prince, President of ATMA, a not-for-profit organization, based in Dubai was honored for organizing blood donation camps in the Middle East. ATMA was formed 14 years ago by the immigrant Indian community in the Middle East with the objective of “creating new possibilities to inspire creativity, humanity and happiness.”
Maria was honored in the presence of Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Merri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, as part of his launching a campaign by donating his blood at the blood donation centre in Latifa Hospital, Dubai. The campaign was part of Dubai Police social initiatives during the Year of Giving, urging people to donate blood to help the sick and injured, police said. “Donating blood is a great human duty and strengthens the bond between members of a society. I urge everybody to donate their blood to help the sick and injured people,” Maj-Gen. Al Merri said in statement.
The need for blood is universal, whether one lives in the United States, Middle East or in India. “Apparently in the past years, there has been an acute shortage of Blood platelets in Dubai. Cancer patients & Thalsemia patients need platelet the most,” says Maria. “I keep getting calls almost every 3-4 weeks to organize a platelet donation,” she adds as the reason for organizing such life saving events.
A small group of friends in Dubai, got together & formed an association named ATMA which stands for ‘A Theme for Mind & Arts’.  ATMA stands for: Attitude to Make it happen; Teamwork – A Team makes it impossible to fail; Members: Committed in delivering the best; and, Accountability: Taking responsibility for our actions and decisions both individually and collectively.
This is the sixth consecutive year that ATMA has organized blood donation camps. Maria, a young mother of three adorable daughters, with a heart to serve and support those in need of help, says, “Unlike whole blood, Platelets cannot be stored for too long a period. So, we get them 15 -20 donors each time as per their requirement. On the other hand, whole blood donation is a simple process where 1 unit of blood is taken from your body. But in platelet donation, the blood taken from the body goes through a segregation where the platelets are removed & rest blood is pumped back into your blood. This is almost thrice time-consuming process than whole blood donation. Also the donors go through a painful experience during this. We find it really difficult to get even this small number donors (15-20),”
 “One of its activities is to reach out to the needy. So for, last 6 years we have been organizing blood donation camps in association with Dubai Blood bank, Latifah Hospital,” Maria adds with a sense of satisfaction.
ATMA, is a well-knit group revealing a marvel in terms of a perfect blend of talents, a community of enthusiastic couples and their brood of budding juniors of various age groups. At ATMA members strive to nurture their goals and ambitions as a group that is socially inclined and at the same time project to the forefront a platform to reveal our quintessential art-centric selves. “The credit for the long standing goodwill that enriches the group activities and relationships goes out to this spirited members. We love to challenge ourselves and create history in our ATMA books. Let us all unite for the unity in ATMA,” says Maria.
According to the American Cancer Society, more than 1.69 million people are expected to be diagnosed with cancer in 2017. Many of them will need blood, sometimes daily, during their chemotherapy treatment. In the United States, every two seconds someone needs blood, while approximately 36,000 units of red blood cells are needed every day in the U.S. alone. It is estimated that sickle cell disease affects 90,000 to 100,000 people in the U.S. About 1,000 babies are born with the disease each year. Sickle cell patients can require frequent blood transfusions throughout their lives. A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood. For more information on ATMA and its many activities, please visit:


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