Saving lives one pint at a time; WLHS blood hosts blood drive sponsered by the American Red Cross

On Oct. 23, West Linn High School will be holding a blood drive sponsored by the American Red Cross and put on by the high school’s Red Cross Club. The goal is to have as many people as possible sign up and be ready to donate blood.

“Our goals for the blood drive are to continue the success we’ve had in the past years and maybe even top it,” Morgan Haskin, senior and Vice President of the Red Cross Club, said. Haskin recommends donating for a number of reasons such as it is healthy to donate as it allows the body to regenerate new and healthy blood.

There are some requirements when it comes to donating. Students must be 17 years but students who are 16 can donate with a parent consent form filled out and turned in to Mandy Weaver, Red Cross Club advisor, or a recruiter for the club. There are also height and weight requirements that must be met.

If interested there is the option of doing a double red cell donation, which takes longer than a normal donation. Double red cell donation is similar to a normal blood donation, but instead it allows one to donate two units of red blood cells while returning the plasma and platelets. Donors have to abide by a stricter set of height and weight requirements.

Maryann Kim, senior, is apart of the Red Cross Club. She is helping spread the word of the blood drive by making announcements in her classes and carrying around a sign up sheet for people to volunteer to donate.

“The more the merrier” Kim said. The main goal right now is to get people more aware of the blood drive and sign up.

It is advised that donors maintain their iron levels by eating foods such as fish, red meat, raisins, spinach, beans, and poultry. Other important things to consider are good night’s sleep the night before and drinking plenty of water before and after donating. By following these tips days before and after giving blood, complications can be avoided.

If interested in donating, sign up with Ms. Weaver or talk to someone in the Red Cross Club. Sign ups will be open until Oct. 15.

“Every two seconds a patient in the US needs blood. Less than 5% of the population actually gives blood on a regular basis,” said Haskin. “There is always a lack of blood and it truly saves lives.”

One pint of blood can save up to three lives. According to the American Red Cross, “The need is constant. The gratification is instant. Give blood.”