WICHITA, Kan. (Nov. 27, 2018) —Wichita and Sedgwick county first responders spend their days helping others and helping to save lives as their top priority. For the 24th year, these first responders will be using that lifesaving priority to bolster the community’s blood supply during the holiday season. Join Wichita’s first responders and be a lifesaver at the annual Wichita and Sedgwick County Battle of the Badges Blood Drive Dec. 17-31 at the Wichita Blood Donation Center, 707 N. Main St.
During the annual Battle of the Badges Blood Drive, Sedgwick County EMS, Sedgwick County Fire Department, Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office, Wichita Fire Department and Wichita Police Department compete to see who can recruit the most blood donors. Everyone who comes to give can cast a vote to determine who will win this year’s bragging rights. All those who come to donate during Battle of the Badges Blood Drive will receive a commemorative T-shirt, while supplies last.
Through the first 23 years of the event, nearly 27,600 blood donations have been collected. The goal for this year’s event is 1,355 blood and platelet donations.
“We are so indebted to our community’s first responders for their continued commitment to helping with blood collection during the holiday season, “said Shannon Wedge, executive director, Red Cross serving Wichita. “The annual Battle of the Badges Blood Drive is one of the longest running blood drives in the country and remains an important way for area residents to support these local heroes and help save a life by giving blood.”
This year’s Battle of the Badges Blood Drive comes at a time when the Red Cross urgently needs blood donors to give now to ensure blood is available for medical treatments and emergencies during the holiday season. Blood donations often decline during the holidays when regular donors are busy with holiday activities and travel. Snowstorms and severe winter weather may also cause blood drive cancellations and further impact donations.
By giving blood or platelets, donors may give patients more time – and more holidays – with loved ones. Make an appointment to give blood at the 2018 Wichita, Sedgwick County Battle of the Badges Blood Drive by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting redcrossblood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org 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 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.
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.