Save a life in 15 minutes

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Photo Credit: Githmie Goonatilleke

Rosana Tabakci, Gabby Feige and Laurent Shiels will run the blood drive this year

by Githmie Goonatilleke, Copy Editor

According to The American Red Cross, every three seconds someone in America needs blood.

Laurent Shiels (’17) and Gabby Feige (’18) will help those who need blood by running the annual blood drive. Shiels and Feige were appointed by Mikaela Rosen and Celia Hans, two recent graduates, who previously ran the blood drive.

To donate, donors over the age of 17 need to fill out a form or sign up online which can be found here. If the donor is 16 then they must sign up and additionally have their parents fill out a consent form.

The blood drive will take place on September 28th, Wednesday on Day 4 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

When the donor comes in to donate blood they will need to show proper I.D such as a student I.D, a drivers license or a passport. Then they will need to answer preliminary questions and go through a series of blood tests to check hemoglobin levels and for anemia. After they finish the preliminary process, it takes 10-20 minutes to donate blood.

Shiels and Feige will be assisted by Rosana Tabakci, a representative from the New Jersey Blood Services which is a division of the New York Blood Center. Tabakci has been working with the Blood Center for 10 years and donates every two months.

“My mom had cancer so she needed blood so I know how important it is for people to donate blood,” Tabakci said on why she got involved with the Blood Center.

At the blood drive, donors will donate blood through whole blood donations. Whole blood donations are the most common blood donation, in which the donor has a needle in his/her arm and donates one pint of blood.

There will also be a few ALYX machine donations where the donor’s blood is put through a centrifuge, separating the red blood cells from the plasma and returning the plasma back to the donor. With this method, donors can donate two pints of blood instead of the typical one pint donation.

Sign up, give blood and save a life.”

— Laurent Shiels

After the donor donates his/her blood, he/she will sit down, eat some snacks and keep his/her blood sugar up before returning to class. If the donor feels faint, other volunteers, called Blood Buddies, will be around to walk them back to class. Blood Buddies will also talk to donors if they are feeling nervous during the donation period.

Shiels, Feige and Tabakci urge everyone to donate blood if they can.

“It’s an important way for people to realize that you are very privileged if you are able to donate blood,” Tabakci said.

For the donor, donating blood will only take 10-15 minutes out of their time but for the patient it will take more than 3 hours to receive the donor’s blood.

“Sign up, give blood and save a life,” Shiels said.