Eligible donors urged to join lifesaving team this winter

January 12, 2018


COLUMBIA, S.C.— Community members are invited to join the American Red Cross, City of Columbia and Mayor Steve Benjamin at the 8th annual ‘Hoop It Up’ Blood Drive. Donors are encouraged to roll up their sleeves at the blood drive on Friday, Feb. 2 from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center, 1101 Lincoln St.


This blood drive comes as the Red Cross faces a winter blood shortage. Winter storms this month have forced many blood drives to cancel causing thousands of blood and platelet donations to go uncollected. Blood donations are urgently needed now so patients can continue to receive the lifesaving treatments they need. Right now, blood products are being distributed to hospitals as fast as they are coming in.


Blood is needed every day for patients with many serious medical conditions. Accident and burn victims, heart surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease may need blood products.


“We will always prioritize the health and wellness of our citizens,” said Mayor Benjamin. “I encourage everyone to come out on Feb. 2 and give the gift of life by donating blood in the annual ‘Hoop it Up’ blood drive. Your donation will make a difference.”


All presenting donors will receive an American Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.


For more information or to schedule an appointment to donate, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code famouslyhot.  


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 (16 with parental consent 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 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.


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 visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.