American Red Cross kicks off “Missing Types” campaign on World Blood Donation Day

American Red Cross kicks off “Missing Types” campaign on World Blood Donation Day
Victoria ready to donate blood for the 1st time
American Red Cross employee Jamie Hudson works to collect blood from first time donor
American Red Cross employee Jamie Hudson works to collect blood from first time donor

BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - A young woman named Victoria sits with sleeves rolled up at an American Red Cross blood donation drive inside UAB, excited for her turn to save a life.

She's just one of the many new donors who turned out on World Blood Donation Day, drawn in by the "Missing Types" campaign.

"The whole idea is to try recruit more blood donors, new blood donors, and those who haven't donated in awhile," says Mark Beddingfield, the Chief Executive Officer for Alabama Red Cross. "The campaign is utilizing logos and taking the letters of the blood types out to get peoples attention about why are those letters missing."

The campaign just kicked off today, and runs through labor day. Beddingfield says with many donations coming from students during the school year, summer blood supplies are always low.

"During summertime collections are lower historically so sometimes there are different blood types that might be missing on a shelf but we need those blood types o always be there because you don't know what's going to happen or what the hospitals needs may be."

Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood, but for the past few years, donations have been declining. In fact, new donors to the Red Cross fell by 80,000 for the past four years. The Red Cross hopes this campaign will change that. The program actually originated in the United Kingdom, and was such a huge success there, that it's spreading worldwide.

"It's something we just adopted and are hoping we will have a similar success. They saw about 5000,00 new blood donors. Our goal is 370,000 in the US."

To find out how you can donate, click here or call 1-800-RED-CROS (733-2767)

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