COLUMBUS, Ohio (June 25, 2018) – Central Ohio law enforcement and firefighters will team up with the American Red Cross this July for the 23rd annual Battle of the Badges Blood Drive to increase the number of blood donations made during summer, when the supply often declines.
Firefighters, police officers, State Highway Patrol and other first responders are often aware of the need for blood when responding to emergencies. In the spirit of saving lives, they have joined forces to give blood and to encourage the public to join them in a friendly competition to see which group can recruit the most donations – law enforcement or firefighters. You can go to any Red Cross blood drive in Central Ohio between Thursday, June 28 and Tuesday, July 31 to give blood and vote for either firefighters or police officers. In the end, the patients who benefit from the available blood products are the real winners.
In 2016 the police officers won the competition for the first time in its 22-year history, beating the firefighters by just 66 donations. Last year, in 2017, the firefighters took back the winning spot by only four blood donations. This year either group has a strong chance to win.
Those who come to donate blood during Battle of the Badges can receive gifts and prizes, including:
- Columbus Zoo and Aquarium buy one get one free entry coupon.
- Enter to win a weekly drawing for four passes to Zoombezi Bay.
- Access to purchase deeply discounted tickets to any Cedar Fair park, including Cedar Point or Kings Island.
- Select Battle of the Badges blood drives will also have Battle T-shirts and coupons from Roosters, while supplies last. (See blood drive list below.)
“First responders help keep our community safe every day,” said Rodney Wilson, communications manager of the Red Cross Central Ohio Blood Services Region. “What better way to honor their service than by joining them in giving the gift of life to help patients in need.”
The annual Battle of the Badges campaign began in 1996 as a friendly competition between firefighters and police officers to see who could bring in the most blood donations. This campaign is scheduled during the critical summer trauma season when the demand for blood often exceeds the supply.
Members of key law enforcement and firefighters’ organizations are expected to donate more than 1,500 pints of blood in July, including members from Local 67 and local fire departments of the International Association of Firefighters, the Fraternal Order of Police Capital City Lodge No. 9, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Franklin County Sheriffs Office and the Buckeye State Sheriffs Association. Local support from media includes WSYX ABC 6, WTTE FOX 28 and Qfm96 96.3 FM. You can view the campaign PSA online here: https://youtu.be/dwpdr0pAGt0.
This blood donation competition comes as the Red Cross is urging individuals to help ensure blood is never missing from hospital shelves by donating blood through the Missing Types campaign. The goal of Missing Types is to inspire new blood donors and those who haven’t given in a while to give this summer and become a regular blood donor for patients in need in the years to come. For the past four years, new Red Cross blood donors have declined by about 80,000 each year. More blood donors are needed now to fill the gaps.
Individuals can go to any Central Ohio Red Cross blood drive to cast their vote during Battle of the Badges from June 28 through July 31.
These select Battle of the Badges blood drives listed below will provide Battle T-shirts and Roosters coupons, while supplies last:
· Tue, 7/3/18, Southeastern Correctional Institution, 5900 B.I.S. Road, Lancaster, OH, 43130, 10:30 AM, 3:30 PM
· Thu, 7/5/18, Jackson Township Fire Dept., 3650 Hoover Rd., Grove City, OH, 43123, 12:00 PM, 5:00 PM
· Fri, 7/6/18, Clear Fork High School, 470 Main Street, Bellville, OH, 44813, 12:00 PM, 6:00 PM
· Fri, 7/6/18, Heath Fire Department, 193 Heath Road, Heath, OH, 43056, 1:00 PM, 7:00 PM
· Fri, 7/6/18, North Lewisburg Municipal Building, 60 E. Maple Street, North Lewisburg, OH, 43060, 1:00 PM, 7:00 PM
· Tue, 7/10/18, Bureau of Criminal Investigation, 1560 State Route 56 SE, London, OH, 43140, 10:30 AM, 4:30 PM
· Tue, 7/10/18, Lancaster City Employees, 111 S. Broad, Lancaster, OH, 43130, 8:30 AM, 2:30 PM
· Tue, 7/10/18, Pickaway Twp. Fire Department, 579 Tarlton Road, Circleville, OH, 43113, 2:00 PM, 7:00 PM
· Tue, 7/10/18, Violet Twp. Fire Dept. Station 2, 8700 Refugee Rd., Pickerington, OH, 43147, 11:00 AM, 7:00 PM
· Wed, 7/11/18, London Correctional Institute, 1580 State Route 56, London, OH, 43140, 8:00 AM, 2:00 PM
· Thu, 7/12/18, Chillicothe Correctional Institution, 15802 St. Rt. 104 North, Chillicothe, OH, 45601, 9:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Wed, 7/18/18, Circleville Fire Department, 586 North Court Street, Circleville, OH, 43113, 3:00 PM, 8:00 PM
· Wed, 7/18/18, Franklin County Courthouse Annex, 410 S. High Street, Columbus, OH, 43215, 9:30 AM, 2:30 PM
· Wed, 7/18/18, Ohio Reformatory for Women, 1479 Collins Ave, Marysville, OH, 43040, 5:00 AM, 4:00 PM
· Fri, 7/20/18, Dublin City, 6200 Eiterman Rd., Dublin, OH, 43016, 9:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Fri, 7/20/18, Genoa Twp. Hall, 5111 S Old 3C Highway, Westerville, OH, 43082, 12:00 PM, 6:00 PM
· Fri, 7/20/18, Mt. Vernon City Police, 5 North Gay Street, Mount Vernon, OH, 43050, 10:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Sat, 7/21/18, Shelby Battle of the Badges, 31 Mack Ave, Shelby, OH, 44875, 9:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Mon, 7/23/18, Athens High School, 49 Connett Rd, The Plains, OH, 45780, 2:00 PM, 8:00 PM
· Mon, 7/23/18, Knox County Fair, 125 Fairgrounds, Mount Vernon, OH, 43050, 1:00 PM, 7:00 PM
· Mon, 7/23/18, Richland Correctional Institution, 1001 Olivesburg Road, Mansfield, OH, 44905, 10:00 AM, 4:00 PM
· Tue, 7/24/18, Concord Township, 7990 Dublin Road, Delaware, OH, 43015, 12:00 PM, 6:00 PM
· Thu, 7/26/18, Columbus Firefighters IAFF Local 67, 379 W. Broad Street, Columbus, OH, 43215, 9:00 AM, 2:00 PM
· Thu, 7/26/18, Correctional Reception Center, 11271 State Route 762, Orient, OH, 43146, 5:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Thu, 7/26/18, Madison Correctional Institution, 1851 State Route 56, London, OH, 43140, 10:00 AM, 4:00 PM
· Thu, 7/26/18, Mt. Vernon Fire Department, 200 W.Gambier Street, Mount Vernon, OH, 43050, 12:00 PM, 6:00 PM
· Thu, 7/26/18, Ohio Police and Fire Pension Fund, 140 E Town Street, Columbus, OH, 43215, 9:30 AM, 2:30 PM
· Fri, 7/27/18, Ross County Battle of the Badges, Ross C. Law Complex, Chillicothe, OH, 45601, 10:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Fri, 7/27/18, Upper Arlington Firefighters Local 1521, 3600 Tremont Road, Upper Arlington, OH, 43221, 10:00 AM, 4:00 PM
· Tue, 7/31/18, Candle Lite, 200 South Street, Leesburg, OH, 45135, 2:00 PM, 7:00 PM
· Tue, 7/31/18, City of Columbus, 77 N. Front St., Columbus, OH, 43215, 9:00 AM, 3:00 PM
· Tue, 7/31/18, City of Delaware Battle of the Badges, 1121 South Houk Road, Delaware, OH, 43015, 12:00 PM, 6:00 PM
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, 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.