We wondered why Carol chose to celebrate her birthday by asking her friends to donate blood.
"My heart is truly vested in Be The Match, the National Bone Marrow Registry and especially to raise awareness of people of color registering—half my family is of Asian descent. I would be the un-Asian half," Carol noted, and rubbed the inside of her elbow likely in anticipation of the blood donation adventure. "But @SWBlood sent me a direct message on Twitter and asked if I would spearhead a drive. I am a big believer of accepting the pie on your plate, so I gave them an enthusiastic yes and starting pressing friends and strangers into service."
How many friends have signed up?
"I keep checking the online appointment scheduler and I'm still seeing some open spots, but I'm hoping to fill the day to keep the Puget Sound Blood Center busy. I want it to be successful for the time their staff invests. My other desire is that it will encourage my friends to pause and think a moment about what their gift does during everyday life or disaster.
"It's just incredible how a simple, simple thing changes the world. It costs you your gas, your time to get to the center, maybe a little anxiety, but what you give is unmeasurable."
Carol shared pictures she snapped during her last donation that occurred at her office. The Blood-Mobile drove up, parked in front of their building and opened for business treating donors with juice and cookies, rockin' music and friendly, encouraging smiles.
"I like to engage people in conversation and one of the personnel had worked with me previously, so we spent time catching up. I met another phlebotomists and learned she was married to a youth minister and had just returned from a church retreat. She and I had an interesting conversation in a different way. I talk to everybody who enters my circle."
You mentioned three social media circles where you are promoting this event. What others are you using?
"Oh, my gosh. I am leveraging everything! I posted on LinkedIN, Plancast, created a 'poster' and uploaded it to Twitpic. I'll be writing about it on Blogger, and I'm asking friends to blog about it. I've got a steady chirp of tweets happening, too.
"We made event pages on local social media spots like Guerrilla-Media, and national hubs like Meetup and Upcoming. We actually have two Facebook pages, one through my Facebook fan page and another Facebook event page that the Blood Center set up, which is a lot cleaner than mine. I tend to get too wordy. Oh, and check out my Schmap! What else..." Carol scanned her open laptop to aid her memory, but before she got distracted with gmail, we asked what happens after the event. Her head bobbed up and a big grin covered her face.
"I'm taking a few days off and enjoying spring break with my daughter. Hoping to get a little travel time in. I'm always up for adventure. I'll post pictures either on Twitpic or Flickr and you can watch us on the road via Foursquare. And, of course, if anything extraordinary happens we'll upload it to YouTube!"
We think Carol should pace her social media pursuits, but this project is too good not to throw your whole heart into.
Join Carol on Wednesday, March 31, 2010 for
Carol's Save a Life Birthday Party
Puget Sound Blood Center - Vancouver
9320 NE Vancouver Mall Blvd
Suite 100, Vancouver, WA 98662
Follow the Schmap to the Blood Center
Follow Google map to the Blood Center
Make your appointment online: http://bit.ly/9MBoxg
Want to, but can’t on the 31st?
Call 360-567-4800 for an alternate date.
EACH DAY Western Washington needs 900 people to donate blood.
1. Eligibility: http://www.psbc.org/programs/blood.htm
2. First Time Donors: http://www.psbc.org/programs/drives_first_time.pdf
3. Donation FAQs: http://www.psbc.org/programs/faq.htm
If you would like to see the lives that are touched by blood donation visit the Puget Sound Blood Center patient videos page.