Recently, the lack of blood donors is gaining new proportions worldwide. This is why the Swedish Blood Service has introduced an initiative that motivates people to become blood donors, and involve their friends as well.
The essence of the initiative is that when donating blood, the donor receives a text message of gratitude. Later, when his blood is used to save somebody’s life, a message arrives that the blood was used and a thank-you note — roughly translated, the text says “Thank you, the blood you gave is now benefiting a patient. Regards, Blood Centre.”
“We are constantly trying to develop ways to express [donors’] importance,” Karolina Blom Wiberg, a communications manager at the Stockholm blood service told The Independent.
The Swedish Blood Service reports that this initiative encourages people to donate blood more often, as well as attract new donors to donate blood.
Likewise, the policy has opened up a bigger discussion on social networks, which led to increased awareness about the lack of donors, as well as a new wave of donors who want to donate blood.
“We get a lot of visibility in social media and traditional media thanks to the SMS. But above all we believe it makes our donors come back to us, and donate again,” noted Ms. Wiberg.
This program was first launched in Stockholm three years ago but is currently collecting all the more positive reactions across the country.
“Social media is an extremely important channel for us to reach our donors. Sweden needs more young donors to have a stable blood supply in the future,” says Lottie Furugård, a communications manager at Stockholm’s blood center.
Sweden’s creativity in getting people to donate blood goes beyond social media. For example, a person can agree to receive notifications from the blood center until they have gone in person and donated blood.
One of the notifications is a lighthearted threat – “We will not give up until you bleed.“
Will this initiative increase blood donations? Only time will tell.
In the meantime, every text message counts – after all, each donation can save up to three lives.
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