November 26, 2014, New York, NY – The New York Blood Center (NYBC) is excited to announce the launch of its new social media campaign – #blood4What. The campaign will run through the winter months, inspiring donors and recipients to share their reasons for giving blood and encourage others to give the gift of life. Donors are invited to join NYBC in two kickoff blood drives on December 1st in New York and New Jersey.
“Donations during winter months are critical for maintaining our region’s blood supply,” said Andrea Cefarelli, Executive Director of Donor Recruitment at NYBC. “The #blood4What campaign is a fun challenge, inspiring people to pledge and save a life. We ask everyone this holiday season – will you accept the challenge?”
It’s simple. People who have donated blood or plan to during the winter are using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share their reasons for donating with the hashtag #blood4What. Recipients are also using #blood4What to share personal stories of how donated blood saved their lives. In the hopes of reaching a broader audience, donors can then challenge three friends or family members to give blood as well. NYBC’s social media channels will feature these positive stories and words of encouragement. Whether you are donating in honor of someone close to you or you were the recipient of a lifesaving donation, #blood4What allows you to share your story and connect with others.
NYBC is hosting blood drives on December 1st to kick off the campaign in New York City and Newark, NJ. Previous blood recipients will be in attendance to meet and greet donors. Presenting donors will receive campaign giveaways while supplies last. To learn more about these blood drives, please call NYBC at (800) 933-2566 or visit www.nybloodcenter.org/blood4what
Lauren, 14, needed extensive transfusions during her heart transplant surgery and has since become an active blood donation advocate. “I’m excited to get on Instagram and see all the donors, pledges, and other recipients like me,” Lauren said. “I can’t wait to see my friends and their friends share their stories. I’m living proof that donations save lives.” Lauren and fellow heart transplant recipient, Emma, 15, will meet and greet donors at the New Jersey Institute of Technology blood drive.
“Life with a primary immunodeficiency disorder can be difficult, but the generosity of blood donors has enabled me to take back my life,” said Joanna, who will be speaking with donors at the John Jay College drive. “I hope everyone gets involved and shares their reasons for donating with #blood4What.”
The entire process takes less than an hour, and a single donation can be used to save multiple lives. Donors with O-negative blood type, or “universal donors,” are especially encouraged to attend, as their blood can be transfused into anyone in a trauma situation. Nearly 2,000 donations are needed each day in New York and New Jersey alone. About one in seven hospital admissions requires a blood transfusion, and with a limited shelf life, supplies must be continually replenished.
Blood donors will receive a free mini-medical exam on site including information about their temperature, blood pressure and hematocrit level. Eligible donors include those people at least age 16 (parental consent required for 16 year olds), who weigh a minimum of 110 pounds, are in good health and meet all Food & Drug Administration and NY or NJ State Department of Health donor criteria. People over 75 may donate with a doctor’s note.
About New York Blood Center (NYBC)
Now more than 50 years old, New York Blood Center (NYBC) is one of the largest independent, community-based blood centers in the country. Each year, NYBC provides approximately one million blood products to nearly 200 hospitals in the Northeast. In addition, NYBC’s Community Blood Center of Greater Kansas City (CBC) serves hospitals in the Kansas City metropolitan area, as well as eastern Kansas and western Missouri. CBC provides nearly 200,000 blood products per year to approximately 70 area hospitals.
NYBC also provides a wide array of transfusion-related medical services. NYBC is also home to the world’s largest public cord blood bank, which provides stem cells for transplant in many countries, and a renowned research institute, which – among other milestones – developed the Hepatitis B vaccine and innovative blood purification technology.