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NHS teams up with American Red Cross

NHS teams up with American Red Cross
Jay Vesperman

NHS hosts their last blood drive of the year with roughly 30 participants who contributed. Each year, NHS proudly hosts their blood drive campaign for the public in the fall and spring, teaming with the American Red Cross. 

Any valiant person above the age of 16 can donate. Although donors face minor drawbacks after a blood donation, such as lightheadedness, participants of the blood drive state they feel altruistic about contributing to the greater good.

Sophomore Robert Armstrong participated in this spring blood drive hosted by NHS on May 11. He has donated blood in the past to an organization that performs surgery on kids who were born with cleft lips. For Armstrong, he sees it as an opportunity to help those in need, “I felt like I gave a little even though I had little. It made me happy and gave me redemption for myself.” He states that he will be donating again in the future.

Anyone who has had surgery often will have a blood transfusion to replace any lost blood. Kylie King has undergone surgery for her cleft lip and palate. She faced many challenges as even basic tasks such as eating were challenging, “…my palate lip caused trouble when I was younger as I could not eat without the food coming from my nose. Following that, I had to take eight years of speech therapy as cleft lip affects speech.” Because of blood donors, she safely underwent surgery that would drastically shape her life.

King said, “I want donors to know their time and blood will not be wasted. Whether it is used for cleft lip and palate victims or not, it is going to help someone, which is admirable.”

Senior Jessica Payne was also a donor to the NHS Spring Blood Drive. She began donating as soon as she was allowed to. Along with Armstrong and other donors, she claims to participate in future blood drives, “I definitely would donate again, it just gives you a good feeling after knowing ur doing something good.” 

The simple procedure goes like this. Students who are 16 or older are welcome to donate. Those who are 16 need parental permission. The blood drives are hosted at the gym where contributors first get checked in with the NHS members. Then a health screening will measure several factors like blood pressure, heart rate, and hemoglobin levels. Afterward, about a pint of blood will be drawn. The entire process is roughly 20 minutes.

Later, the patient goes to the canteen station where NHS members Emma Rose Doran and Nolan Smith will provide water, juice, and snacks. Donors will remain seated at the table for at least 15 minutes to avoid passing out due to being lightheaded or other possible drawbacks.

Donating blood means helping people and saving lives. The American Red Cross states that every 2 seconds, someone in the US needs blood. Whole blood donations are separated into three components, red cells, platelets, and plasma, hence why a single donation could save up to three lives. Contributing a pint of blood is one of the easiest ways to drastically improve and save a life. For donors at the Spring Blood Drive, a little dizziness is well worth helping those in need. Their heroic act is inspiring their community to do the greater good.

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