Key Club's Blood Drive is a Success
The Key Club held its annual Blood Drive in the auxiliary gym on October 10th from 8:15-2:15, with Mrs. D’Urso and Miss Mazza as its sponsors. Students 16 years and older with signed permission slips were able to donate blood to help save lives. Free raffles, gift cards, gift baskets, and more were available for all who donated, and donating seniors received red cords for graduation.
“There was lots of planning that went into the blood drive,” said Mrs. D’Urso. “We had to contact the representative from the blood center, and we usually had meetings beforehand where we went through what kind of strategies we can use to get the most donors. The day of the event, of course, was also very busy. We had to know how to set up everything, and how much staff was needed for all of it.”
Multiple students were exiting class at different points throughout the day to come down for the Blood Drive. Miss Mazza explains, “Students came in, handed their permission slips, signed in, and went through a process. The New Jersey Blood Center recorded their medical information and took finger swabs to test their iron levels, and upon that determined whether they were fit to donate blood. If they were, then they got in line to get to one of the beds where a phlebotomist took their blood. That always takes about 20-30 minutes, and when they were done, they were escorted to the canteen table to have things to drink and eat and sat there for approximately 20 minutes until they felt fine. After that, they went back to class.”
Blood tests can be a scary experience for many, especially teenagers, but knowing that their blood would be saving lives seemed to help the student donors push through.
“I feel like it makes me a better person, and people stay alive,” Senior Kayleigh McClafferty said. “I think anyone that’s eligible should donate their blood.”
Another donor, Senior Kaan Aydin, said that he has an interest in the medical field. “I’ve always wanted to donate blood, and I’m becoming an EMT so I know how important it is for blood to be available. I’m an O-, which is a rare blood type, and people need that because O-'s can only receive other O-’s blood.”
“I want to give people what they need, even if it makes me a little nervous,” said Senior Phoenix Bock. “It’s worth it, though, because I’m contributing to a good cause.”
Many of the student donors were pleased with themselves after the blood donation process. For every unit collected, 3 lives were saved, and the Key club was able to collect 106 units of blood, equating to saving about 318 lives. Mrs. D’Urso said, “I think they really understand what it means to save lives, and a lot of our students are cognizant of that and they do want to donate so they’re looking forward to donating even in the spring if they couldn’t do it in the fall because of their age.”