By Victoria Esteve
LIU Post hosted a blood drive on October 23 and 24 for the New York Blood Center in Hillwood from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.. The drive provided food and t-shirts for those who donated a pint of blood in what they designated as the canteen area so students were able to replenish right away.
“The need for blood is there because it is used daily,” said account manager, Michelle McCaffrey. According to McCaffrey, it takes about 45 minutes to give blood and the donation gets sent to local hospitals that are in need of the supply. “The hospitals use around 2,000 pints a day. Only 2% of the population actually donates, so that presents a challenge.”
The organization’s goal for those two days was to have 250 people donate. According to one of the representatives, the turnout was “pretty strong”.
“I have an O blood type, which is universal. I’m used to donating every year for 4 years now… It’s just blood,” Leslie Zuriti, a senior Criminal Justice major, commented after just donating.
“This is my second time giving blood,” added Lauren Malesky, an undecided freshman. “It’s important because it could be you that needs that blood… you never know.”
For one of the volunteers that helped out with the blood drive, the importance of these donations really hit home. “I had a heart operation in which I lost a lot of blood,” said Rolf Adams, a retired teacher who decided to give his time to help out with the event. “I needed 12 bags of palettes for the blood clotting. I got 8 bags from my family but the other 4 were from strangers that donated… It’s good to donate because last I heard it’s nice to help people.”
Along with taking blood donations, palettes and white blood cell donations were also taken for those who are in need. Be the Match was also present to recruit those who wanted to register to donate bone marrow. “We look for these sorts of diverse colleges because of the 9 million people on our donor list, 26% are minorities and that may be the hardest to match,” explained Jair Thompson, the recruitment supervisor for New York Bone Marrow Department. “We need to find people of the same racial background… to increase the amount of unrelated matched donors.”
The blood drive will be coming back once more on December.