Red Cross app aims to encourage more youth donors to give blood

The Singapore Red Cross introduced a new feature to its app, Red Cross Connection, at a blood donation drive in Singapore Polytechnic. Called the Impact Tracker, it aims to further engage more youth donors.
The Singapore Red Cross introduced a new feature to its app, Red Cross Connection, at a blood donation drive in Singapore Polytechnic. Called the Impact Tracker, it aims to further engage more youth donors.PHOTO: SINGAPORE RED CROSS

SINGAPORE - Blood donors will get a better sense of the impact they can make when their blood types are needed through a new feature in the Singapore Red Cross mobile app.

Red Cross Connection, which was launched in 2013 and has over 17,000 users, aims to raise awareness of the need for donations, especially among users aged 16 to 25.

SRC introduced the Impact Tracker on Wednesday at a blood donation drive at Singapore Polytechnic.

It allows users to get updates of the nation's monthly blood demands and find out how many more donors are needed.

"This creates a sense of urgency and allows us to inform the youth," said Ms Elaine Tham, head of SRC's blood donor recruitment programme.

During emergency situations or when a particular blood type is needed urgently, the app sends alerts that users can share on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter.

Users can keep track of their contributions by scanning a QR code after they donate.

Last year, youth donors made up 30 per cent of the donor pool, which comprised of almost 70,000 people.

Mr Taha Selamat, 18, a student at Singapore Polytechnic, donated blood for the first time on Wednesday. He said: "It's good that the app can encourage people who have not donated blood to do so, especially through their friends."

byseow@sph.com.sg