Give Hope, Give Blood

September 30, 2010

Red Cross Blood Donors in October Can Honor the Fight Against Breast Cancer

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and the American Red Cross, Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Region is honoring those who have struggled with this disease with “Walls of Hope” at all blood drives and donor centers throughout the month of October.  Participants may write a small card in honor of a cancer patient to post on the Wall Of Hope. Call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to schedule a life-saving donation appointment. Platelet donors can call 1-800-272-2123 to schedule an appointment.

Blood is often used to treat those undergoing treatment for all types of cancer, including breast cancer. Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy can kill red blood cells and platelets, and these patients rely on blood transfusions throughout their treatment to remain strong and recover. According to the American Cancer Society, over 1.5 million people are expected to be diagnosed with cancer in 2010 in the United States. Many of those patients will require transfusions of blood and platelets.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to give life to local patients in need with a blood donation and show your support of the fight against Breast Cancer” said Gary J. Ouellette, Chief Executive Officer for the GC&P Region. “Many of us know someone who has been touched by this disease, or by another form of cancer, and this give our donors the opportunity to share their experience with others while giving hope to patients who may currently by fighting the battle.”

The “Wall of Hope” will be available at all American Red Cross Donor Centers and participating blood drives throughout October.  In addition, all participants will receive a commemorative “I Gave Hope” lapel pin (while supplies last). Blood donations are needed to treat patients throughout the Greater Chesapeake and Potomac Region undergoing treatment for cancer, premature babies, trauma victims, transplant surgeries, those with chronic blood disorders, and many others. Over 1000 units of blood are needed daily to meet the needs of local patients.          

Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission 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 YOUNGER THAN 19 YEARS also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.  Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.

Members of the community are asked to call 1-800-GIVE-LIFE immediately to schedule an appointment to donate at any American Red Cross Donor Center or community blood drive.  Information about Regional Blood Donor Centers or community blood drive locations and times can be found here.  Business and community groups that are willing to hold blood drives are asked to call 1-800-787-9282, x4925 for information.  For volunteer information, please call the American Red Cross Volunteer Office at 1-800-272-0094, Ext. 1, or e-mail