Blood Walk

Blood Walk

Tanish Mathur

The increased awareness on how stress and work-life balance is leading to a spurt of medical complications, has led people to take up walking like never before. Walking is being prescribed by medical practitioners as a vital component of a healthy lifestyle.

Among all this newfound respect that walking has gained, you would still find some people who have taken the concept walking to a different level altogether. Do you know a person who is walking day and night, covering the length and breadth of our country for a noble cause? Meet Mr. Kiran Verma from Delhi who was recently in Bangalore as part of his cross-country walk from Kashmir to Kanyakumari to raise awareness on blood donation. Kiran started his walk from Srinagar on 26th January 2018, and his objective is to walk (15000kms) across all states and union territories, spreading the message of blood donation.

For Kiran, it all started when he donated blood for the first time to one of his teachers while doing a diploma course. His objective was rather straightforward – increase his chances of getting good marks. However, the gratitude from the family members of the teacher changed his perspective and direction of his life. Post this event he started regularly donating blood and slowly people used to reach out to him from far and near. Kiran created a WhatsApp group for better reach and connectivity, but after meeting several people from different walks of life in very difficult situations, he started thinking of a more viable, structured and organized solution.

The idea of an online blood bank germinated and he conceptualised Simply Blood. Simply Blood is an android based app that connects the scattered dots and satisfies the need of a blood bank virtually. Both donor and recipient are connected via Simply Blood based on proximity. Until an agreement is reached, both parties remain anonymous to each other. However, there is no cost involved for the donor or the recipient.

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The app stores database of possible donors and uses GPS technology to track both recipient and donor. This helps in timely availability of blood in critical medical conditions where multiple donors are available but recipient can select who can donate at the earliest. Imagine the advantage of such a solution in a city like Bangalore where point to point travel could be a challenge due to traffic. 

Simply Blood app has reached across geographies and currently connects people from 11 countries. Since inception, around 2000 potential lives have been saved by this app. 

Kiran covered around 3500 kms by the time he reached hit Bangalore. On the way he connected with around 300,000 people across multiple states and created awareness about blood donation. His mission is to encourage 10 people every kilometre to take pledge to donate blood at least once in their lifetime. Kiran normally interacts with students in colleges and universities considering they are the future, and meet people in public places to create awareness. 

The PM Essence team met Kiran while he was in Bangalore. Kiran shared his vision and demonstrated the impressive Simply Blood app. Another interesting trait of Kiran is that during his walking mission he also keeps on donating blood, which he did in Bangalore as well.

During discussion on the Simply Blood App, Kiran explained that the app is not a mere database of blood donors but has an inbuilt notification system that reduces the effort of reaching the right donors. As soon as somebody in need posts the requirement for blood in the app, donors in the vicinity gets notified. In case there are no donor available in the specific location, the request is handled manually by the donor database and associated agencies. Kiran came across several occasions where donated blood was being collected by a middleman and sold in lieu of a consideration, while the donor believes that he has donated to a right person in need. For that anonymity feature in the app safeguard interests of both donor and receiver. There are no middlemen involved; no cost and consideration and nothing is being charged by the service provider.

It was great meeting with Mr. Kiran Verma. In our complex socio-economic environment where consideration is the key in rendering services, the PM Essence team was impressed by this man who has taken up a task of influencing current and future generations of the country without any thought of remuneration.

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His parting message to the project management community – “Have a vision and focus in life and deliver with passion”. PM Essence team wishes Mr. Kiran Verma all the best in his great journey!