Imagine a world where the letters A, B and O have gone missing. For example: _meric_n Red Cr_ss. You can’t help but notice that something is off. These aren’t just random letters. A, B and O are the letters that make up the major blood groups, and when there’s a blood shortage, types A, B, O and AB blood really can go missing from hospital shelves. This summer, the Red Cross will launch our second annual Missing Types campaign to encourage blood donations.

To help raise awareness for the need for blood donors, businesses, organizations and individuals across the country—including local partners—are joining the Missing Types movement by removing the A’s, B’s and O’s from signage, websites and social media. The goal of Missing Types is to get people to take notice and take action by donating blood.

The need for this campaign is real. Each year, more than 21 million blood components are transfused to U.S. patients, with the Red Cross providing about 40 percent of that supply. Despite blood’s lifesaving role, only three out of 100 people in the U.S. give blood each year.

Blood donations help people undergoing cancer treatment, those receiving organ transplants, accident victims and other patients. As a community volunteer leader with the Northwest Wisconsin Chapter of the Red Cross, I meet so many people whose lives have been impacted, if not saved, by blood transfusions.

On behalf of the Red Cross, I’m inviting you to help fill the missing types by giving blood this summer.

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