MADISON, Wis. (Aug. 15, 2022) - The American Red Cross and the Madison Fire and Police Departments are hosting the 11th annual Never Forget Blood Drive Saturday, Sept. 10 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Madison Fire Station 14, 3201 Dairy Dr.
The Madison Fire and Police Departments began hosting Red Cross blood drives in 2012. Since that first drive was held, over nine hundred donations have been collected. This year they anticipate exceeding the one thousandth donation milestone.
Throughout the years, this blood drive has been successful due to the efforts of many dedicated blood donors, many who are Madison Firefighters and Police Officers. Lori Kneebone-Karst, apparatus engineer for the Madison Fire Department, has been the blood program leader working behind the scenes for this commemorative blood drive. She helps to coordinate the many aspects involved in putting this event together.
“Giving blood is a small way the community can help honor the day,” said Kneebone-Karst. “A community member can come and roll up their sleeves and feel like a hero that day. That’s all you have to do. Heroes don’t wear capes; they roll up their sleeves and give blood.”
Donors of all blood types are urged to make an appointment to give now. All presenting donors will receive a $10 gift card (via email) courtesy of Suburban Propane, and a custom T-shirt, while supplies last. Donors who come to give in September will also receive a free haircut coupon by email from Sport Clips Haircuts.
“We are extremely grateful for the support of the Madison Fire and Police Departments in making this blood drive a success,” said Kyle Krieg, Executive Director for the Southwest Wisconsin Chapter of the American Red Cross. “Giving blood is a simple way to honor those heroes and put Madison’s spirit of service into action.”
Emergencies of all types occur daily in communities nationwide. The Red Cross encourages people to be prepared should an emergency strike in their neighborhood. Part of being prepared is ensuring an adequate blood supply. Blood can take up to three days to be tested, processed and made available for patients, so it’s the blood already on the shelves that helps save lives in an emergency.
Every two seconds in the United States blood is needed to respond to patient emergencies, including accident and burn victims, heart surgery and organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. The Red Cross must collect nearly 13,000 blood and more than 2,600 platelet donations every day for the patients at about 2,500 hospitals nationwide.
Blood drive safety
The Red Cross follows a high standard of safety and infection control. The Red Cross will continue to socially distance wherever possible at blood drives, donation centers and facilities. While donors are no longer required to wear a face mask, individuals may choose to continue to wear a mask for any reason. The Red Cross will also adhere to more stringent face mask requirements per state and/or local guidance, or at the request of blood drive sponsors. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment prior to arriving at a drive.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.
Amplify Your Impact − Volunteer!
Another way to support the lifesaving mission of the Red Cross is to become a volunteer blood donor ambassador at Red Cross blood drives. Blood donor ambassadors help greet, check-in and thank blood donors to ensure they have a positive donation experience.
Volunteers can also serve as transportation specialists, playing a vital role in ensuring lifesaving blood products are delivered to nearby hospitals. For more information and to apply for a either position, visit https://www.redcross.org/volunteertoday.
About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides comfort to victims of disasters; supplies about 40% of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; distributes international humanitarian aid; and supports veterans, military members and their families. The Red Cross is a nonprofit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to deliver its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or CruzRojaAmericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.