The thought of donating blood brings numerous people great anxiety. The image of a needle sticking into your arm while it sucks your blood into a bag to be used somehow can be difficult to comprehend. But what if you needed a blood transfusion and there was no blood to save your life?

Recently, my roommate and I had a date at the Community Blood Center here in Kansas City and it was an enlightening experience. The man who took my blood was from Somalia, Africa. He had a Q & A session with us and we learned the struggle he had in his own country and his struggles coming to America. He hadn’t been back to his home country due to the state of its situation. I realized how lucky we are to live in a country where we as Americans have the privilege of great medical care and access to receive healthy blood transfusions.

The week after I gave blood, I received an email from the Community Blood Center stating I had saved two people’s lives. This little electronic email brought so much joy, I went to the Center’s website to schedule my next blood donation. Not only did I schedule an appointment, I learned a few facts. The Community Blood Center needs 580 donors each day to meet area hospitals’ needs. They send out almost 3,600 units of blood components each week to treat patients in over 70 area hospitals. Since opening in 1958, over 800,000 people have received blood donated at Community Blood Centers. By just making one donation, you can help as many as two patients. Over 99% of the blood collected by CBC stays in our community. The center solely relies on volunteer blood donors to meet the community’s blood needs. If you go to the site you will see the “Today’s Blood Supply”. For the past couple of weeks the need for blood has been at “critical”. When not at a critical level, they have at least a three day supply, not nearly enough to fill the need.

Make an opportunity to give back to your community and save a life or two. My roommate received her first 1 gallon pin. Imagine the lives she has saved. Go to www.savealifenow.org and schedule an appointment or just walk in, they need all the donors they can get. You could be the next Good Samaritan to receive a 1 gallon pin.

Yours Truly
-Kathryn