You can be a Superhero – Donate Blood!With March 7th fast approaching, an important event is making its way to the forefront of school news, the Spring Blood Drive. Everyone is welcome to volunteer on a day dedicated to saving lives. In order to be eligible to donate blood, participants must be at least 16 (with a parental consent form) or 17 (without form). One pint of blood and just ten minutes of your time can save as many as three lives. Mrs. Nishita Desai, the faculty organizer, speaks to the importance of donating blood in high school, “Everybody is in the same shoes. This is the first time many students will donate blood, so it’s nice to have that comfort and support in overcoming fears. When you start in high school, donating blood becomes a lifelong practice. This is the first time you will feel that you have truly given something of yourself to save lives, it’s truly touching.” There are currently no chemical or artificial methods to synthesize any component of blood, and since there is no substitute, blood donation is vital. In addition, according to the American Red Cross, someone in the United States needs blood every two seconds. This means that blood centers need as many donors as possible just to have enough for one day. The numerous blood captains pledge to work tirelessly to reach out to as many volunteers as possible. Senior Blood Captain Alex Shpylko ’17 has been involved with multiple blood drives. Although he is greatly unsettled by the sight of blood, Shpylko donates regularly. With family members who require blood donations, he nobly does his best to try and make sure that his family does not receive more blood than they give. Many people feel uneasy about needles, however most say the incredible satisfaction of a successful donation far outweighs their fears. The process is simple and safe. Donors sign-up ahead of time and are given a time to report for donation. On the day of the drive, donors are first asked to register. Then, in a private, a health history is taken and a minimal physical exam is conducted to measure temperature, hemoglobin, blood pressure, and pulse. A new, sterile needle is used for each donation. After a quick pinch, donors have time to relax while the blood is drawn, which takes approximately 8-10 minutes. If a donor is feeling scared or anxious during the process, there will be many volunteers and blood captains around for support. After the donation is complete, and the donor has been bandaged up, they are encouraged to stay and enjoy the many refreshments provided by the Parents Association and faculty volunteers. After 10-15 minutes, donors are free to go and resume their daily activities with a newfound sense of accomplishment. If blood donation is not feasible for you, please consider donating food or time. Whatever your involvement during the Spring Blood Drive, you will be somebody’s hero. Source: http://www.redcrossblood.org/learn-about-blood/blood-facts-and-statistics
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