The American Red Cross has a blood shortage and donations are needed
BROOKFIELD, Ill. (July 26, 2016) –The American Red Cross invites the community to donate blood at the Brookfield Zoo Blood Drive on Aug.15 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the zoo’s Discovery Center. Participants should enter through the North Gate.
This blood drive comes at an important time of year. Blood donations are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. Blood and platelet donations often decline during the summer months when busy summer schedules and vacation plans can cause some donors to be less available to give. Additionally, blood donations at high school and college blood drives, which account for as much as 20 percent of blood donations during the school year, decline when many schools are out of session. But, the need for blood remains constant all summer long.
Blood donations help patients like Karen Fiedler, a 50 year-old Chicago woman diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) on Dec. 30, 2015. She started standard chemotherapy treatment right away at Loyola Medical Center, and received blood proved by a Red Cross blood donor.
“People don’t realize what chemotherapy does to your body,” Fiedler said. “Each time I had chemotherapy treatment, I needed to receive blood and platelets - sometime multiple times.”
She estimates in the past six months or so she has received between 20 and 30 pints of blood. Fiedler said she was not aware of the blood part of her treatment when she started it. “I don’t know what would have happened to me if I had not received blood products. I could not have functioned without the platelets and the blood. I am alive today thanks to generous donors who provided blood that aided in my chemotherapy treatment,” Fiedler said.
“When I got diagnosed and added to the pool of people that needed blood, I became aware of the much greater need for blood that is out there,” she added. “Another thing – when I donated blood before I became ill, I realized it is really a simple process. It doesn’t hurt or cost you anything. You can give of yourself to help people you don’t even know. What a great feeling that is!”
All presenting donors can get a $10 Visa gift card and enjoy a Blood Donor Block party grill out, courtesy of Suburban Propane, and a $5 Amazon.com gift card claim code. Also, all pre-registered donors receive fee zoo admission the day of the drive for one adult and up to two children, and free parking in the North Main Parking Lot, located at 8400 31st Street. Walk-in donors are welcomed, and will receive a ticket for free admission to the zoo on a return visit. Free childcare will be provided for blood donors.
Brookfield Zoo Blood Drive
Monday, August 15
8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Brookfield Zoo’s Discovery Center
Enter through the North Gate entrance
8400 31st Street (1st Avenue and 31st Street)
Brookfield, Ill. 60513
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code: BrookfieldZoo or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or to obtain 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 (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.