Blood Donor Drive
January is National Blood Donation month. It’s a time for donating life-giving blood and giving back to your community to ensure a safe blood supply for those in need. It also makes it a great time to organize a blood donation event for your residents living in your community.
January is special, but you can still organize such an event other times of the year as well. It is possible for blood drives to be organized at any time, and in a way that works best for your community.
Blood drives can be set up on site at a location of your choosing, or you can encourage residents to go to a local center to give. You may also be eligible for a blood drive mobile collection center that can come and park and set up within your community.
For this event to work best it’s important to gauge interest from your community ahead of time and work on getting appointments set up. Usually donors can sign up for certain donation time slots and then show up at their appointed time to give. This ensures that everyone leaves enough time to answer the health questionnaires and is given the attention they each need throughout the donation process.
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It’s best to reach out to and consult with your local Red Cross or other local blood donation center to coordinate the details of your event.
The Red Cross offers recruitment strategies and tips on their website that can help your designated blood drive coordinator pull together the numbers needed to host a large scale event. There is also a toolkit of resources that can help you advertise the event, set appointments for donors, and keep things running smoothly on the big day.
Reach out to members of your community to gather stories of those who have received life-saving blood donations at some point in their life. Your residents will connect with others who are similar to them and lived through tragic accidents or life-threatening situations.
Share these stories on social media and in newsletters to drum up more support for the event and greater participation.
Image source: Pixabay
Similarly it’s also helpful to share donor stories from those who have given blood in the past so that others know what to expect. Sharing donor stories can remove some of the fears that people make have about giving blood and make them more likely to sign up and participate.
Unfortunately, it’s unethical and dangerous for communities and organizations to offer financial incentives or other prizes for donating. Offering incentives for giving blood may entice potential donors to lie in their health interview or questionnaire.
***TIP*** For safety reasons, it’s important to encourage residents to give just for the sake of giving. If you’re insistent in giving some type of gift or incentive to participants, be sure to check with your blood drive coordinator to ensure it’s allowed.
You can always offer after-donation snacks and drinks for your resident participants, or gift large quantities of food items to the center on behalf of residents as well. In this way you can ensure you’re your residents feel okay to work and drive after donating.
Organizing a blood drive is a great way to bond and connect members of your community to their participation in a single crucial and life-saving event. It will also ensure that you are part of an important social community activity that saves millions of lives every year.