It’s On You: Inspiring the African American Community to Step Up and Save Lives

Case Studies
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African Americans have the lowest odds of finding a matching marrow donor compared to all other racial and ethnic groups. For thousands of African Americans suffering from sickle cell disease and life-threatening blood cancers, this can be the difference between life and death.

Be The Match, the nonprofit charged with operating the national registry of volunteer marrow donors and matching them with patients, partnered with PadillaCRT to raise awareness about this critical need during July, which is African American Bone Marrow Awareness Month.

PadillaCRT and Be The Match created and launched “It’s On You,” a month-long awareness campaign and powerful call-to-action to those in the African American community to step up and save lives. The campaign captured public attention by showcasing stories of real people: African American patients currently searching for a matching donor and marrow donors who could help dispel the myths of donation, demonstrating the power that one person has to save another’s life.

Despite a limited budget and media’s reluctance to cover awareness months, the campaign exceeded all its goals, including registering nearly 250 African Americans online—26 percent more than a typical month. The campaign microsite received more than 40,000 unique visits, with 8.1 percent taking some sort of action. Media coverage was extensive, resulting in about 350 news stories, including nine national news stories in prominent African American media outlets.

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