ATLANTA (June 13, 2019) – The Atlanta United FC is teaming up with the American Red Cross on World Blood Donor Day to help answer the call for blood donations. The community is invited to give blood Friday, June 14 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, 1 AMB Drive NW in Atlanta. Presenting donors will receive two tickets to a United game on July 7, while supplies last.
The American Red Cross has a constant need for blood donors of all types to give now to help prevent a summer blood shortage. During the summer months, blood and platelet donations often do not keep pace with hospital demand. Though busy summer schedules, vacations and school breaks cause a drop-in donations, accidents and medical emergencies don’t take a summer break.
Donating blood is a way to make lifesaving impact in the lives of patients like Ryder Oliver. On March 26, 2018, Ryder was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor called Medulloblastoma at the age of three. He immediately underwent a five-and-a-half-hour brain surgery to remove the tumor and then received his first of many blood transfusions. Ryder then completed three rounds of chemotherapy, three rounds of high dose chemotherapy and three stem cell transplants. He finished his treatment Oct. 12, 2018, and is currently in remission.
“The summer months can be a challenging time for blood collections, but thanks to Atlanta United FC and Mercedes-Benz Stadium, we have the ability to help replenish the blood supply,” said Ronnika A. McFall, external communications manager for the Red Cross Southern Blood Services Region. “We encourage the community to join us on World Blood Donor Day to meet the needs of patients, like Ryder, being treated for cancer, sickle cell disease and other health conditions.”
Every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood. In the Red Cross Southern Region, on average, approximately 568 donations are needed each day from area blood donors to help patients in need, like 4-year-old, Ryder Oliver, who is a survivor of Brain Cancer.
Those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact. During this type of donation, red blood cells are separated from other blood components, and the plasma and platelets are safely and comfortably returned to the donor.
How to donate blood
For more information and to make an appointment to donate, download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) sponsor code: atlunited. Donors of all blood types are needed. 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 (16 with parental consent in some states), 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 donors can now 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, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.