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Not vampires: Ivy Ching, Rabia Raza, and Janice Wong

Students from Birmingham City University’s School of Media are hoping to save lives by campaigning to increase blood donation from ethnic minorities.

The Gifted Blood campaign has been organised by Rabia Raza, Ivy Ching, and Janice Wong, third year students on the BA (Hons) Media and Communications degree, as part of their final year public relations project.

They hope to increase awareness of blood donation, with a focus on ethnic minority groups.

As part of the Gifted Blood Campaign, the students will be holding a Blood Donation Drive on Tuesday 8th and Wednesday 9th May at Birmingham New Street’s Donor Centre and are encouraging people throughout Birmingham to come along and donate.

22 year old Rabia from Birmingham said:

“We wanted to produce a valuable campaign to focus awareness on a well-deserved cause. Blood donation is a procedure which saves lives, yet we found it to be overlooked amongst ethnic minority and younger communities. Coming from a diverse range of backgrounds ourselves including, Chinese, Malaysian, Iranian and Pakistani, we hope to quash the myths and issues surrounding blood donation that may prevent ethnic minorities from donating.”

The campaign would not have been possible without the assistance of NHS Blood and Transplant. Theo Clarke, spokesperson for NHSBT, said:

“It’s fantastic to see the youth of Birmingham pulling together to encourage more members of the community to donate blood. Birmingham is a multicultural city and this is a great initiative to make sure our blood donor base reflects this – it is blood that is donated BY the community FOR the community and NHSBT are delighted to give people the chance to be a lifesaver!”

The blood donation drive will be held at Birmingham New Street’s Donor Centre between 10am and 3.30pm on Tuesday 8th May and between 12pm and 5pm on Wednesday 9th May.  For more information and to register to give blood please email giftedblood@gmail.com. To be eligible to give blood you must be aged between 17 and 65, weigh over 7st 12lbs (50kg) and be in general good health.

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