Vital Signs April 2010


100% Club (Blood drive sponsors who met or exceeded goal)

New Sponsors

Planning your summer blood drives
As spring makes way for the warmer months ahead, now would be an ideal time to start planning your summer blood drives. 
While summer is typically a difficult time to collect blood, you can help make a difference by scheduling a drive in the months when the need is especially great. 
Here are three suggestions for scheduling a summer blood drive.
  1. Schedule your drive before or after major holidays.  It’s not uncommon for many people travel in the days surrounding Independence Day or Labor Day.  As a result, there is usually a need for sponsors to schedule blood drives around this time. While you might not see as many donors around major holidays, your decision to host a drive around that time may make an even greater impact because of the possible increased need for blood.
  2. Contact your local Red Cross representative. Your representative works with other blood drive coordinators year-round and may be able to give you helpful suggestions based on your location, group size, and the time in which you are trying to schedule a drive.

  3. Host a themed drive. To celebrate summer, host a luau or beach-themed blood drive complete with inflatable beach balls and plastic leis sometime between June and August.
To learn more about the available resources and tools to help make your blood drive a success, please visit us at and click the For Blood Drive Coordinators box on the left side of the page. 

Santa Clara University student Joe Bittner.
Not your Average Joe

As a member of the student Rotary Club at Santa Clara University, Joe Bittner exemplifies the “service above self” motto in his role as a Red Cross blood drive coordinator.
With a hands-on approach to planning blood drives, the 20-year-old Portland native has increased the number of his school’s campus drives from one to three a year.  He also helped coordinate two recent drives resulting in a combined 130 units and is preparing for another blood drive in May.
In the weeks leading up to each drive, Bittner will hang posters, man tables to educate others about the blood donation process, and use Facebook to connect with students on campus.  He estimates that about one-third of students sign up for the blood drives by way of online registration.
While organizing blood drives is just one of his many commitments outside academics, Bittner feels his early involvement with the Red Cross during high school helped pave the way for his coordinator role at Santa Clara University.
“When I was a junior, many of my friends who were seniors were involved with planning and running the blood drives,” said Bittner.  “One day they let me take over some of the responsibilities and I was hooked.  Those experiences made an impression on me and I want to continue that now because I strongly believe in giving blood.”
As Joe has seen many students successfully donate in his first two years of college, there have also been times where he says some students get turned away because they either studied abroad or had low iron levels.  Despite the challenges and minor setbacks, Bittner says there are usually some last-minute walk-ins who help fill in any remaining gaps on the schedule.

We’d like to extend a special thanks to Joe Bittner for all his hard work and being one of our best blood donation advocates.



The need is constant.
The gratification is instant.

Give blood.™

American Red Cross • Arizona Blood Services Region
222 South Cherry Ave. • Tucson, AZ 85719
Copyright © 2010 | The American National Red Cross