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Australian Red Cross and Facebook and launch Blood Donation app feature locally

The Australian Red Cross Lifeblood and Facebook are teaming up to increase much needed blood supplies in Australia.

Launching today, in light of World Blood Donor Day, Facebook’s new Blood Donations feature will allow those aged between 18 and 65 to receive updates on Facebook about giving blood, get notified about opportunities to donate at local blood donor centres and invite friends to donate.

Facebook teams up with Australian Red Cross Lifeblood to launch Blood Donation feature in Australia

Mia Garlick, director of public policy for Facebook Australia and New Zealand, said: “The work undertaken by Lifeblood saves lives every day. The need for blood in Australia is ongoing, with one blood donation needed every 24 seconds and a new blood donor needed every 5 minutes.

“We want it to make it as easy as possible for our Australian community to donate blood and save lives, and within a few clicks you can sign up, be notified when your local donor centre needs more donors to book in, as well as encourage others to do the same.”

Garlick added: “During the COVID-19 crisis, we’ve seen many Australians come together on Facebook to help each other, for example by offering to help others in Facebook Groups. This product launching today is another way Australians can come together and use our services to learn about how and where they can donate blood, no matter where they are in Australia.”

Samantha Bartlett, Lifeblood’s marketing director said of the partnership: “We know Facebook is a great way to spread the message about giving blood and for people to encourage others to get involved as well, so we’re excited about the blood donation feature.

“In Australia this means we’re able to let people who have updated their profile know when a blood donor centre nearby needs their help.

“Over the last 12 months, with the rise of people working from home, people’s donating habits have changed, so this is a great way for people to know when their ‘new’ local donor centre needs a helping hand.

“We’re encouraging existing donors, former donors, and people who have considered donating but haven’t gotten around to it yet, to update their status so we can reach them when we need it most,” Bartlett concluded.

One-in-three Australians will need blood or blood products in their lifetime. A new blood donor is needed every five minutes. One blood donation is needed every 24 seconds and around 31,000 donations are needed every week to meet demand.

Facebook’s new Blood Donations feature has already resulted in more than 100 million Facebook users sign up to receive notifications to donate blood globally, increasing blood donations around the world and helping maintain blood supplies during COVID-19.

The feature will allow those eligible to sign up to receive updates on Facebook about giving blood, get notified about opportunities to donate at local blood donor centres and invite friends to donate.

Facebook is promoting the feature by notifying people in their newsfeeds, or people can find it by searching “blood donations” on Facebook.

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