Saving lives one donor at a time

Photo by Michael Maraghi
Photo by Michael Maraghi

By Michael Maraghi, Staff Writer

Students donated a total of 70 units of blood during the American Red Cross Blood Drive in Wilson Formal on Tuesday, Sept. 26. The donations, which were made by 86 applicants, are responsible for an estimated 210 lives saved nationwide.

The goal was to obtain 76 units from the close to 100 applicants, but fell short due to deferrals by Red Cross stipulations, such as donors with low iron or visits to certain foreign countries within the last 12 months. Seven individuals participated in Power Red Donations, which draws two units of blood in one sitting.

Senior Claire Sauter has been a student blood drive coordinator for multiple years. She explained the impact of the drive, compared to previous years.

“I think it’s a great opportunity for St. John Fisher to support a great cause and get students involved in a greater global issue worldwide,” she said. “There’s a shortage of blood, and it’s especially prevalent now because of Hurricane Harvey and Irma that’s occurring and so there’s a great need for blood down south. This year, that’s what our cause was.”

Registration was instructive and attentive. Students were encouraged to eat plenty of snacks and drink a sufficient amount of water the morning of the donation. After meeting specific health requirements determined by a short physical by Red Cross volunteers, individuals donated blood.

“It’s great. We always get plenty of people to come out and donate and it’s just a great initiative that we’ve done since I was a freshman. It’s a seamless process that really takes no more than a half hour,” said James Nguyen, President of Student Activities Board.

People may be compelled to donate blood for various reasons. Freshman Madison Byrne explained why donating blood can be beneficial.

“I usually donate blood whenever I have a chance because it goes to a great cause and it’s important to help out where you can,” said Byrne. “My cousin’s girlfriend got in a really tragic car accident and lost a lot of blood and needed a blood transfusion. I’ve been donating blood before that but it just goes to show that you never know when people close to you may need something to help out.”

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