NETHERLANDS

Celebrations on World Blood Donor Day were organized by Sanquin Blood Supply Foundation, which has responsibility for the national blood supply. The theme this year was “Blood group”. A number of different activities paved the way for the day itself. In February, blood donors were invited to go in for a competition to answer four questions about blood types and to finish a slogan about their own blood group. The prize was a weekend or midweek stay at a bungalow park in the Netherlands or Germany. The winning slogan was placed on Sanquin’s web site, and in the magazine “Bloedverwant”, distributed to donors a few days before 14 June.

From April, a special section of the web site was dedicated to WBDD, giving information on blood groups. There were also testimonies from donors and from patients who received a blood transfusion.

National and regional media organizations published information, while broadcasting stations conducted interviews and shot film at donor centres. Donors who came to donate on 14 June received special treatment, being offered fancy pastries with their coffee. In addition, every donor who gave blood on WBDD was invited to order a T-shirt in their size with their own blood group via the Sanquin web site.

After 14 June, a campaign was launched in the donor centres with the title “I am as beautiful as blood”. The campaign was designed to show that every donated blood group is special and beautiful. The purpose was to educate donors about their blood group and to explain that donation frequency depends on the demand from hospitals for blood products with their blood group. The goal was to make donors feel more appreciated, even if they are not asked to donate very often.

Brochures on every blood group were produced, and every donor in the period 14 June to 14 October received an explanatory folder on his or her blood group. Each month in addition a blood group of the month was celebrated.

Contact: Ingeborg van der Heijden
Staff member Communications
Stichting Sanquin Bloedvoorziening

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