Red Cross launching new campaign to encourage people to give blood no matter the type

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It starts at the donation center. Every day, hundreds of people around Northeast Ohio give blood or platelets around.

It takes a little bit of time but helps a whole lot of people.

 

"I think it's a pay it forward type of deal; when you leave here you know you've done a good thing," said blood donor Dan Hoffman.

And, those good things are all around you.

When Benjamin Aholt was born, he had a minor surgery that almost cost him his life. Doctors found he had Hemophilia B and he needed blood fast.

And, now, just shy of two years old, blood donors made the difference in his life then and are still making a difference now.

"He had a rough start and thank God that there was the blood available when he needed the blood, and the blood products he was given, or he wouldn't be here today," said Ben's mom, Stephanie Aholt.

But, not everyone gives blood.

In fact, people who have given blood in the past don't do it now. The American Red Cross has begun a new campaign to encourage new donors and to get former donors back, because no matter if it's A, B, or O, if it's missing, no one gets help.

"When the letters A, B, and O vanish from everyday life the gaps are striking," Red Cross CEO Retired Rear Admiral Mike Parks said. "When A, B and O blood types are missing from hospital shelves, patient care can be impacted and, quite frankly, people can die."

The Red Cross is teaming up with different brands and companies who will remove the letters A, B and O temporarily from social media posts and on letterheads to encourage people to give blood no matter what type they have.

The Red Cross says they hope the campaign also gets people talking about donations.

They're hoping people will organize drives at their churches, schools and workplaces to help create more new donors and bring back some old ones.

**Find out more from the American Red Cross**

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