The Global Embassy of Activists for Peace in Guatemala, the Guatevida Blood Bank of the Public Health Ministry and Guatevision’s program joined forces and carried out from April 4, through May 3, 2014, the 3rd International Blood Drive Marathon: “Life is in the Blood. Donating the Sap of Life”. Campaign which was developed in 10 cities of the Guatemalan Republic, starting in the capital and expanding to cities like Quetzaltenango, Totonicapan, Coban, Chiquimula, San Marcos, Chimaltenango, Guastatoya, Escuintla and Zacapa.
They achieved the participation of more than 1,206 potential donors and a total of 757 effective donors. The main goal of this campaign is to create and promote a voluntary, regular and spontaneous blood donation culture; and for this, talks were developed aimed to college students and of secondary education, of the participant cities, to clarify doubts and break paradigms about blood donation.
Days before, an outreach and information campaign was promoted with brochures and flyers, with the support of three television channels, cable television and radio. Channel 7 through their morning program “Our world in the morning”, transmitted a donation live to their audience, to show how simple and safe it is to donate blood. In the same way, the national channel Guatevision, with the support of known athletes, carried out a campaign of public spots promoting different blood drives.
All this outreach and promotion campaign was successful thanks to the participation of volunteer activists, the support of the Red Cross, national and international athletes, Channel 7, Canal Antigua, Guatevision, Nuestro Diario, la Prensa Libre, Diario de Centro America; and the different cable and local television companies in the participant cities.
According to statistics, Guatemala collects around 300 and 500 blood units monthly; but these numbers do not reach the percentage recommended by the World Health Organization (of 1 to 2% of the population). Guatemala surpasses 15 million habitants, so it is necessary to continue to promote a voluntary blood donation culture, because thanks to these activities, the number of voluntary donors has increased.
With the merger of public and private entities, media, middle study centers, universities and organizations of social project, in this 3rd International Blood Drive Marathon, 70% of the units collected came from people who donated blood for the first time.
Institutions that gave their support:
- Mariano Gálvez University and their campuses in Quetzaltenango and Chiquimula.
- CUNORI (Centro Universitario de Oriente de la Universidad de San Carlos de Guatemala).
- Instituto Normal Mixto de Occidente of San Marcos.
- Regional Center of Zacapa of the Rafael Landívar University.
- Government Departament of Chimaltenango and Mr. Governor.
- Municipalities of Chiquimula and El Progreso.
- Historic Center Comision of Guatemala.
- Mall Palmeras Escuintla Plaza.
- Guatemaltecan Red Cross.
- Guatevida, National Program of Blood Banks.