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Advertising screens in some of the UK’s biggest cities will show hard-hitting statistics and real-life images of people whose lives were saved through blood donation, such as B Positive star Mary Adeturinmo.
Prominent digital advertising screens in a number of the UK’s biggest cities will, from Monday January 28th give real-time updates on how many lifesaving blood donation appointments are available at the nearest donor centre.
The screens, in and around the city centre, will show hard hitting statistics and powerful real-life images of people whose lives were saved through blood donation.
The advertising company Clear Channel donated substantial free advertising space and its supporting dynamic delivery technology.
Nationally 260,000 people 17-34 regularly donate blood. However most of England’s blood donors (416,000) are aged over 45 and there is need for the young donors of the future.
Previous research has shown that younger people feel time-poor. The displays will give daily statistics on how many appointments are available and say exactly how many metres away the blood centre is to help people understand how quickly and simply they can save a life.
The real people featured include Mary Adeturinmo, 25, from Highbury in Islington, who has sickle cell disease and needs 10 units of blood every four weeks.
Her red blood cells form into a sickle shape which stops them moving around her body. It has affected many parts of her body creating a complex chronic pain condition as well as haemorrhaging in her eye.
Sickle cell is more common in black patients and more black donors are needed to help sickle cell patients.
Blood transfusions help prevent acute episodes of pain and fatigue, and in the long term may reduce the risk of strokes and organ failure.
Mary, who sings with the B Positive choir, which starred in Britain’s Got Talent 2017, is graduate of Architecture at the University of Kent in Canterbury. She started having major health challenges in her second year of university and started on a blood exchange programme shortly after.
Mary sang at the MOBOs but was too ill for Britain’s Got Talent. She still sings with the choir at their public events around the country.
She said: “I hope to raise awareness in the black community in particular.
“I have seen the adverse effect of blood that isn’t the ideal match and I think that if people were aware of these issues, they would be more inclined to try and help.
“You never know when you or a member of your family might need blood.”
The people pictured also include Peter King, who received countless blood and platelet transfusions during his treatment for acute myeloid leukaemia. He took part in photos with his dad Steve.
Peter, from Portslade in East Sussex, now aged eight, was diagnosed through blood tests aged three and a half, following a spell of viruses, a rash and an upset tummy.
Acute myeloid leukaemia is an aggressive cancer. The body produces too many immature white blood cells. These get stuck in the bone marrow, stopping it producing enough red blood cells and mature white blood cells.
Dad Steve, a town planner aged 45 said: “He had an awful lot of transfusions and the difference they made was quite amazing – you could see the colour going back into him. We’re so grateful to everyone who gives blood.”
Peter is now in school and is very active, in particular enjoying playing football and hockey.
Steve added: “We hope the campaign will encourage more young people to give blood.”
Creative communications company 23red came up with the campaign.
Mike Stredder, Director of Blood Donation for NHS Blood and Transplant, said: “Many young people walk through their city centre every day but don’t realise how easy and simple it is to start giving blood.
“We’re very grateful to 23red and Clear Channel for creating powerful, innovative modern adverts for blood donation that will grab people’s attention.”
Clear Channel said the campaign was a first for them, due to the flow of real-time data directly from the NHS Blood and Transplant.
Louise Stubbings, Creative Director at Clear Channel, said: “This campaign is the gold standard for outdoor advertising – perfect targeting, alongside a relevant message for the audience, and beautiful engaging visuals. We’re exceptionally proud to be working with NHS Blood and Transplant and 23red on this campaign, which will make a real difference in saving lives around England.”
Clear Channel is displaying the blood donation appeals for three weeks near blood donor centres in Birmingham, Bradford, Gloucester, Leeds, Liverpool, Poole, and London’s West End.
Notes to editors
NHS Blood and Transplant