Blood giving drive targets 10,000 donations in a week
From January 10 to 17, this year's campaign includes trap music and Whatsapp group as it aims to bring in more young donors
Catalonia's annual blood donation campaign, La Marató de Donants de Sang, was presented on Tuesday with the target of getting 10,000 people to give blood between January 10 and 17.
The period following Christmas generally sees a 25% drop in the number of people giving blood compared with other months in the year, and the drive - the biggest of its kind in the country - aims to offset the annual shortfall.
Giving blood to the sound of trap
Although the blood donation drive is held every new year, the 2020 edition will be conducted to the rhythm of trap music, as Catalan singer Lildami - Damià Rodríguez - has composed a song especially for the occasion.
Another novelty this year is that the Blood and Tissue Bank, which organizes the campaign, has also launched a Whatsapp group at the number 677071756, in which people can ask for information and receive important updates.
A fifth of donors under 30
Every year the campaign's organizers add innovations to attract more donors, and this edition aims at reaching more young people, as about 20% of all blood donors are aged between 18 and 29.
"It's not that young people give blood less, but we need to bring more on board. Every year 25,000 people stop giving, and so we need 20,000 new donors and if they're young, they'll be able to donate for longer," said the bank's communications head, Aurora Masip.
Special activities in Barcelona on Jan 10 & 11
Anyone wishing to take part in the drive can go to any major Catalan hospital to do so, and on January 10 and 11, the campaign will have a marquee and two buses in Barcelona's Plaça Catalunya, where there will also be special activities for all the public.
Anyone between the ages of 18 and 70 who weighs more than 50 kilos and who is in good health is welcome to give blood, and participants can sign up online at the campaign's website, maratodonants.cat, to get information and a reminder the day before.
August, December and January are the months when blood reserves are at their lowest, and along with boosting donations, the campaign aims to raise awareness about the importance of making this "indispensable" gesture, according to the bank's head, Manel Peiró.