Did you know there are 86,400 seconds in each day?
Ready for another interesting fact? During 2006, American Red Cross blood donation statistics showed that every two seconds someone in America needed blood. If you do the math that ended up being a whopping 43,200 people per day who needed blood in America alone! If you really want to analyze things further, in a 365-day calendar year that equates to roughly 15,768,000 people who needed blood during 2006in the United States alone! Luckily, during the same year, with a donor base of 9.5 million, American blood donors helped fight back by donating 16 million units of blood. These numbers give you a very basic idea of how eerily and apprehensively close the relationship of supply and demand between the number of those who need blood and the number of those who donate actually is.
When it comes to donating blood, everyone has their own reasons for doing so. Some donors I talk to tell me they enjoy helping out their local communities. Others tell me they donate because they or one of their loved ones’ lives have been directly affected by someone’s blood donation. In my time at Incept, hearkening back to my roots on the front lines of blood donor recruitment as a Conversational Marketing Expert (CME), I have talked with many proud and extremely consistent blood donors. Some of these donors have amassed fifty donations, seventy-five donations, even as high as one-hundred or more lifetime blood donations over the course of their lives. When I see those kind of numbers, I become almost baffled by the thought of just how committed these folks are.
Don’t get me wrong, though! I am a three-to-four-time-a-year blood donor myself! I believe in it fully. However, I guess with only about eight or nine donations under my belt, I have a long way to go in comparison with other blood donors. When I ask how a blood donor who has donated one hundred times can be so committed, it is mostly out of astonishment and admiration rather than a sense of disbelief. In 2001, after the September 11th terrorist attacks, there was ahumongous outpouring of blood donations from the general population. In only a couple weeks, there were almost 480,000 units of blood that had been donated! Obviously, it was a very dark time for our country, but we still managed to find compassion and patriotism shining through.
I wonder sometimes, though, does it always have to take something extremely terrible for there to be such a positive and unprecedented boost in blood donations? There is absolutely nothing wrong with helping out during times of national need, but I think one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from regular blood donors is that there is always a call for action. It does not matter if it is donating blood for disaster relief efforts in Japan (thousands of miles away), before starting the weekend to help out tornado victims in Missouri, or with the thought that it is for an unknown child who is battling cancer. No matter the size of the adversity or time of the year, there will always be the need for blood donors to donate.
Being a blood donor, what keeps you going when it comes to donating blood? What keeps you donating blood regularly?