MILWAUKEE, Wis. (Dec. 6, 2019) — Give something that means something – donate blood and help ensure patients have the blood products they need. The American Red Cross is partnering with Milwaukee Radio Alliance and invites the community to help save lives by giving blood at the eighth annual Day of Donations Blood Drive Thursday, Dec. 26 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino in Milwaukee. All blood donors can park for free in the parking structure attached to the casino.
Kaylyn Gilroy learned early in life the lifesaving benefits that come from generous blood donors. Kaylyn was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia at age three. Her cancer journey included nearly three years of intense chemotherapy. During that time, she received a significant amount of blood products. Now at age eighteen she is cancer free.
“Learning what it takes to be sure our community has enough blood for emergencies and every day needs, has shown me how important the work of the American Red Cross is,” said Kaylyn. “Having had a form of blood cancer, I am not able to donate blood, but I do coordinate blood drives at my school and encourage my peers and the school community to donate. This way I can give back and hopefully make a difference for others. Without generous donors giving their blood, I would not be here today. I am very blessed and truly thankful to be a part of such an impactful organization!”
This blood drive comes as the Red Cross faces a critical need for all blood types, especially types O negative and positive. Blood and platelet donors are urged to give now to help avoid delays in lifesaving medical care for patients this winter. The Red Cross is thanking those who come to give Dec. 19, 2019, through Jan. 5, 2020, with an exclusive long-sleeved T-shirt, while supplies last
“The Red Cross is grateful to the Milwaukee community for supporting patients by donating lifesaving blood,” said Laura McGuire, communications manager for the Red Cross Wisconsin Blood Services Region. “Year after year generous donors roll up a sleeve during this busy holiday season and give the gift of life. Their efforts are very much appreciated.”
The winter months can be among the most challenging times of year for the Red Cross to collect enough blood donations. Many donors are busy with holiday activities, and inclement weather can force the cancellation of blood drives. Additionally, some donors become temporarily ineligible because of seasonal illnesses.
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. 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.
How to Donate
Simply download the 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, 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 or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.