JOLIET, Ill. (July 10, 2019) — Blood products are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in, and more donations are needed now to replenish the blood supply. The American Red Cross of the Illinois River Valley Board of Directors invites the community to give at the Blood Drive on Route 66, Wednesday, July 24, from 1 to 7 p.m. at the historic Rialto Square Theatre, 102 N. Chicago St., Joliet, in the Esplanade and Rotunda rooms.
All presenting donors will receive a special Rialto Presale Pass to Rialto Square Theatre shows, a coupon for a free pint of Culver’s ice cream, and a free Red Cross T-shirt or water bottle, all while supplies last!
This blood drive comes as the Red Cross faces an emergency need for blood donors to give now to help avoid delays in lifesaving medical care for patients this summer. More donations are immediately needed to help replenish the blood supply. Last summer we were thrilled that this blood drive collected 62 lifesaving donations with most of those donations coming from first time donors. Our volunteers and staff are patient, experienced and professional at coaching new donors through the donation process. Blood donations of all types are needed and acquiring new donors helps to keep the blood supply at stable levels.
“During the summer, the Red Cross experiences a drastic decline in new donors, and current donors often delay giving due to warm-weather activities and vacation plans,” said Megan Davis, donor recruitment account manager for the Red Cross Heart of America Blood Services Region. “We appreciate the Rialto Square Theatre and community members for their support in getting this message out and encouraging people to come out to the Rialto Theater and donate.”
Donated blood may be used to help accident victims, surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. There is no substitute for donated blood products. Each day, the Red Cross must collect more than 13,000 blood donations to meet the needs of patients at approximately 2,500 hospitals across the country.
While all blood types are needed, those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation at this blood drive. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact.
All those who come to donate at select blood drives will receive one free ticket, valid for entry to participating U.S. Cedar Fair parks, while supplies last. Tickets are valid through Sept. 2, 2019, and other restrictions may apply. Donors can also visit RedCrossBlood.org/CedarFair to take advantage of an exclusive ticket offer that gives $2 of each ticket purchased online back to the Red Cross. Additionally, those who come to give July 1-31 will also be automatically entered to win a trip for four to Knott’s Berry Farm or Cedar Point.
How to donate blood
Simply download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, sponsor code: Route66 or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) 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 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, from a computer or mobile device. 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, cruzrojaamericana.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.