More than 100 people rolled up their sleeves to give blood at a charity’s 59th donor session.

A total of 186 people, including 35 new donors, turned up to the Joely Bear blood drive at Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue yesterday to ‘give blood, not excuses’.

Face painting and a bouncy castle were also available, providing a crèche for children while the 17 to 65 year olds donated blood.

The Joely Bear appeal was founded in 1995 by the Renak family, after four-year-old Joel Renak lost a year-long battle with a rare form of liver cancer.

The appeal is now reaching its 20th year, and has just received a message of support from Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis.

A celebration of the appeal’s work is to be held at the end of January next year, while the 60th blood donor session is to go ahead on October 26.