Hi, It’s Dean again.
It’s the second day and I realised I wanted to write more about what I’m trying to achieve with RedJeans that’s different from what other people are already doing. Here’s a quick list of things I’m trying to achieve with this effort — which I sincerely hope you’ll join me in!
- Get more people donating blood. I understand there are a lot of issues around blood donation which I hope we can get more knowledgeable people speaking out and dispelling a lot of the myths around it. There’s also a reality that not everyone knows that donating blood is a thing you can do! Raising awareness of the benefits for the donor, the life-saving goodness of the donated blood, and understanding the impact of the stories of the people affected by the availability of blood are all in line with the mission of the site.
- Build communities around blood donation. The act of donating blood is very self-fulfilling and I’ve always wondered why there isn’t more celebration around it. I’d like to help people build connections around blood donation, to get together, talk about giving blood, and working with the institutions that manage the blood to ensure we have ample supply around the world. Blood has a six-week shelf-life and unless we have a constant stream of donations coming through, this life-saving resource can run dangerously low.
- Celebrate the journey. Lots of people have a story around a family member, a loved one, a friend, a colleague, or themselves being affected by the act of receiving (or donating!) life-saving blood transfusions. In the US, 4.5 million people could die each year without receiving life-saving blood transfusions. In Australia, where I live, 1/3 of the population will need at least one blood transfusion in their lifetime. We want to highlight the story of the people who are willing to share their experience and their story.
- Run events to bring people together. I love myself a good meet-up, and I really think that blood donation is better done when it’s done together. Being there supporting each other and coming in with a purpose and forming bonds around this selfless act of donating blood should be an act we should celebrate.
- Encourage health and well-being to be a blessing to those in need. Being able to give blood is a blessing that I believe we should encourage more people to share. I believe that a strong motivator (especially for me) to become and stay healthy is so that I can keep donating blood while I can, to pay it forward. If like me you feel a strong pull to be healthy enough to donate blood regularly, I’d like to help you with information, community, and encouragement.
Because it’s still the early days of the project, there’s a lot of ideas floating around that I am frantically writing down on paper and digital notebooks, thinking about strategies to help the get the word out, and hoping that more people sympathetic to the cause will join me in this journey. I’m in the process of learning about the process of setting up a non-profit organisation in Australia, thinking about ways to bootstrap the operation so that we can get events scheduled in venues, looking for people to work with at the Red Cross here in Australia, and all the fun things I could be doing!
For now, RedJeans is just a website, and I’d really like to make it so much more in the coming days, weeks, months, and years!
If you have experience in these things and would like to be part of the organisation and administrative details, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org or send a direct message to the @redjeansorg account on Twitter. For now it will be me who’ll be responding to these messages, and I’ll appreciate your feedback and support!
I’m diving in head-first into this and documenting the learning process here — and hopefully I’ll have more things to announce soon!