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Saving Lives, One Pint at a Time

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The first blood drive of this year took place on November 11, 2010 with much faculty and student participation.

For years, the American Red Cross (ARC) Blood Drive has been coming to Gilmour to give students and faculty a chance to save lives by donating blood.

When giving blood, a donor gives one pint, which can save the lives of three individuals, and is one-tenth of all the blood in an average body. After 56 days, the body system will have replenished that lost blood, and the body will be ready to donate again.

This donated blood can help patients in the future who have suffered from trauma accidents or have received surgery or organ transplants. Donated blood is always in need.

Not everyone can give blood because there are health requirements that donors have to pass for the donors’ safety along with the safety of those who will receive the blood.

The ARC has always had an age requirement of 17, but last year was the first year the Red Cross Blood Drive allowed students under the age of 17 to give blood. Now, students can give at the age of 16 as long as a waiver is signed by the parents.

The process of giving blood is very safe and shows one’s courage. Ms. Linda Wheeler, Upper School Office Secretary, says, “I first gave blood when I was 18 and I was very nervous. But after it was over, I realized how easy it was to help. Giving blood is a good reminder of how healthy we are, and that we are able to help people that aren’t healthy.” With each blood donation, three people who may not have lived otherwise, can receive a second chance due to the kindness of each and every donor.

The American Red Cross makes donating blood very simple. The ARC really makes the health and safety of the donor their first priority. Matthew Grider (`11) says, “The 10 or so minutes of the needle and blood is worth knowing that you helped give someone the chance to live.”

Ryan Tobbe (`11) has given blood as well. He says, “I like that people are so supportive when you give blood. If you say you are scared of needles, there will be someone beside you to sit with you as you give blood.”

Some first time donors at this blood drive were very happy to donate. Andrew Gabrielson (`11), who participated in the ARC blood drive says, “I liked being able to do something so simple while helping the community: saving lives and participating in a school organized blood drive.”