ConnectLife has seen a tremendous response from our WNY community after our call for blood donors, but our work is not over. Collecting blood is a marathon, not a sprint. Blood donors are needed to consistently give now and in the future.
Remember the words of the U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams: "Social distancing does not mean social disengagement."
We will be taking appointments ONLY, for the foreseeable future. Even if you can't find an appointment right now - local patients at WNY hospitals will still need you in the coming weeks. Click here to schedule your appointment to donate blood – appointments available throughout April and May.
Important Update: ConnectLife's Eastern Hills Blood Donation Center is moving to ConnectLife headquarters - effective immediately. We are continuing to monitor the outbreak of COVID-19. Information and resources on COVID-19, blood donation, and social distancing can be found here.
Elissa Banas is a Donate Life Club coordinator with City Honors and her daughter Allie was in a Donate Life Club. Allie recently donated blood for the first time and we asked them both the same questions about why they donate with Unyts.
1. How long have you been donating blood with Unyts?
Elissa - I’ve been donating with Unyts for about 10 years - and donating blood on and off for at least 20 years.
Allie - this past April was the first time. Unyts ran a blood drive at our school. It was good timing because I participate in several sports, but had nothing scheduled for the remainder of that day (and I was 17).
2. What made you start donating blood?
Elissa - I honestly don’t remember. I know the reason that I continue to give blood is because my father had several serious surgeries and needed transfusions each time. He died four years ago now, but I donate knowing that my blood will help others - just like other people’s blood helped my dad.
Allie - I was blood typed at birth (because my dad is Rh + and my mom is Rh -) and so I’ve been told my whole life about the fact that I’m a “universal donor.” That, along with my mom talking about how important it is to help others, made me want to donate.
3. How often do you donate?
Elissa - I donate once or twice a year.
Allie - I also plan to donate once or twice a year. I’ll be playing Division 3 ice hockey when I start at SUNY Potsdam in the fall, and so donating from September through April is difficult because you are supposed to take it easy the rest of the day after giving blood and we practice daily and have games several times a week.
4. What would you tell someone that is debating about donating blood?
Elissa - There’s not many things you can do where you give up just one hour of your time and know that you could be saving up to three lives.
Allie - Why not help someone if you have the opportunity to do so?
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