Key Club Hosts Blood Drive

The high school library was busy Dec. 6 as the Key Club ran a blood-donation drive. (Photo by Priscilla Lucci)

The high school library was busy Dec. 6 as the Key Club ran a blood-donation drive. (Photo by Priscilla Lucci)

Joshua Torres, Staff Reporter

Rising back from COVID-19, many school activities are becoming unrestricted and starting back up again, one of those being the blood drive.

Members of Key Club, a student service organization, put together the blood drive during school hours on Dec. 6. This helped to emphasize that donating blood is a big opportunity for people wanting to give back to their community. Due to health concerns during the COVID-19 pandemic that started in March 2020, however, the blood drive had been canceled, until it was resurrected this year.

“I think this was a really great blood drive, especially after not doing it for three years,” said English Teacher and Key Club Faculty Adviser, Kristen Chiara. 

She said that she was proud of the students’ achievement.

Typically every year in fall and spring, Miller-Keystone Blood Center comes into the high school library and collects blood drawn from staff and students. Sadly, due to COVID-19, there had been no blood drives since 2019. 

Cushioning the fall back into the biannual blood drive, fewer donation slots were offered, which made the whole process much easier, Key Club members reported. Despite that factor, this year had a better-than-expected outcome of 49 blood donor participants and 31 pints of donated blood.

Many students were happy that they donated and recommended that other people should donate blood. 

“I donated and I personally think it was for a great cause,” said senior Ivanna Viznovych, student president of Key Club. “You really see what impact it makes and how effective it could be.” 

Key Club members, Miller-Keystone staff, and others, said they hope to see more people donate blood in the spring during the next blood drive. In order to donate blood, a person must be in general good health, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or older (or 16 with a signed permission slip from a parent). 

Miller-Keystone Blood Center is a member of America’s Blood Centers, a national network of independent, non-profit community blood centers. These organizations provide about 60 percent of the blood products transfused in the United States. Center officials say they are the only organization providing blood in our region, to 33 hospitals.

A donor does not need a special reason to give blood. A constant demand for blood exists, as it is essential to help patients survive surgeries, cancer treatments, chronic illnesses and traumatic injuries.

Many people think that their blood donations are not needed because there are so many other people who donate blood, but statistics show that every pint of blood a person donates can save up to three different lives.

Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs a blood transfusion. Quite frequently, shortages of blood occur in various regions of the country, which can potentially delay patients’ treatments, so there is always a demand for blood.

On another note, blood donation is considered a volunteering act, which a student can put on a resume to look good.

Lastly, people who donate blood get to learn what blood type they are, and who doesn’t want to learn that?