Give the perfect gift this holiday season – give blood Dec. 21
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The American Red Cross will continue the holiday tradition of hosting the 12 Hours of Giving Blood Drive, the largest one-day blood drive in Minnesota. The blood drive gives area residents the opportunity to give the perfect gift while helping boost the blood supply prior to the holidays.
The 12 Hours of Giving Blood Drive will be held Dec. 21, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., at the Envision Event Center (formerly the Prom Center), 484 Inwood Ave. N, in Oakdale. All who come to give blood will receive free gift wrapping, a special gift bag, hourly prize drawings including a 4k ultra high-definition flat panel TV and a lap top computer, holiday entertainment and food, and a long-sleeved Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last. Donors will also have the opportunity to meet Santa, who will make appearances throughout the day.
“Blood donation only takes about an hour of your time, and it could mean another holiday with family and friends for many patients,” said Mary Pucel, director of Donor Recruitment of the North Central Blood Services Region. “It’s a great gift to give, and it doesn’t cost a dime!”
Blood donors of all types are needed to roll up a sleeve to help ensure patients continue to receive blood throughout the holiday season. To make an appointment for the 12 Hours of Giving Blood Drive, donors can use sponsor code 12 hours on the Red Cross Blood Donor App, online at redcrossblood.org or by calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
A seasonal decline in donations occurs from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day when donors get busy with family gatherings and travel. However, patients don’t get a holiday vacation from needing lifesaving transfusions. In fact, every two seconds, someone in the U.S. needs blood.
How to donate blood
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 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.