GREATER SPRINGFIELD – The American Red Cross seeks eligible donors to give blood in honor of World Blood Donor Day, June 14, and throughout the summer to help ensure a sufficient blood supply for patients in need.
Summer is an especially difficult time to collect enough blood to meet the needs of hospital patients. Many schools that host blood drives are out of session during the summer, and regular donors are often vacationing, potentially making them less available to give.
World Blood Donor Day highlights the constant need for donors – during the summer and throughout the year. Supermodel Niki Taylor, the celebrity spokesperson for World Blood Donor Day, fully understands the importance of blood donations. In 2001, she was in a near-fatal car accident and received about 100 pints of blood. To this day, she attributes her survival to the blood donors and doctors who helped save her life.
Those who come to donate blood with the Red Cross June 8 to 14 will receive a limited-edition Nexcare give bandage in one of eight global-inspired designs in honor of World Blood Donor Day.
Every day this summer is a chance to give hope. Eligible donors are encouraged to choose their day to make a difference. Donors of all blood types – especially those with types O negative, A negative and B negative – are needed. To make an appointment to give blood, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 800-RED CROSS (800-733-2767).
Upcoming local blood donation opportunities include:
June 8 – noon to 6 p.m., Our Savior’s Lutheran, 319 Granby Road.
June 3 – 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Agawam Corporate Center, 67 Hunt St.
June 14 – 10 a.m. - 3 p.m., Six Flags New England/Human Resources Center, 1756 Main St.
June 10 – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Daniel O’Connell's Sons, 480 Hampden St.
June 11 – 1 to 6 p.m., Loomis House, 298 Jarvis Ave.
June 1 to 3 and 8 to 11 – 12:45 to 6:30 p.m., Springfield Blood Donation Center, 150 Brookdale Drive.
June 4 – 12:15 to 6:30 p.m., Springfield Blood Donation Center, 150 Brookdale Drive.
June 5 to 7 and 12 to 15 – 8:15 a.m. to 2 p.m., Springfield Blood Donation Center, 150 Brookdale Drive.
June 5 – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Pride Convenience Store, 234 E. Main St.
June 9 – 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Goodwill Industries, 621 E. Main St.
The American Red Cross urges donors to choose their day to give hope to patients in need by donating blood or platelets during the “100 days of summer. 100 days of hope.” campaign, officially sponsored by Suburban Propane.
“Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer and vacation season, and the start of a seasonal decline in blood and platelet donations,” said Jecoliah Ellis, External Communications Manager, American Red Cross Massachusetts Blood Services Region. “By choosing a day to give blood or platelets, volunteer donors can give hope and help maintain a sufficient supply for patients in need.”
To encourage donations around the Memorial Day holiday, those who come to give blood or platelets from May 23 to 25 will receive a Red Cross RuMe tote bag, while supplies last.
Summer vacations and travel can contribute to less availability for people to give blood or platelets. In a spring survey of Red Cross blood and platelet donors, nearly 90 percent indicated plans to take vacations this summer. However, patients don’t get a summer holiday or vacation from needing lifesaving blood. The Red Cross relies on volunteer donors for the 15,000 blood donations needed every day to support patients at about 2,600 hospitals and transfusion centers nationwide.
As official sponsor of the summer campaign, which begins Memorial Day weekend and runs through Labor Day weekend, Suburban Propane will support an advertising public awareness campaign about the constant need for blood and platelet donations, and encourage employees and customers to give. Additionally, Suburban Propane employees will volunteer at Red Cross blood drives and facilities nationwide in one of the largest national volunteer commitments to the Red Cross Blood Services from a corporate partner.