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Annual blood drive breaks county record
By Rhian Merwald
UNCP collected 183 units of blood during their annual blood drive on Sept. 23 in the University Center sponsored by the Wrestling Team and Student Health Services.
This was the first blood drive of the school year and broke the record of most units of blood collected in Robeson County.
Students, faculty and staff lined up to donate blood. Chairs were lined up in the lounge with a donor and nurse at most of them. Many UNCP students came out to show their support.
The Blood Drive was sponsored by UNCP’s wrestling team and by Student Health Services with a goal of 165 units. Wrestlers sat at the sign in table from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. to check people in and recruit students, faculty and staff to donate. The wrestling team also collected money for the local Red Cross Chapter to be used for disaster relief.
Everyone who gave blood was entered into a drawing for a $1,000 gas card, but that is not why Mike Sanchez, a UNCP student, gave blood.
“I decided to give blood today because I know how important it is for hospitals to have it. I race motocross and accidents can be pretty sick,” Sanchez said.
Students and faculty weren’t the only people giving blood at the blood drive. Interim Chancellor Charles Jenkins also came to show how important it is to be a blood donor.
“I give blood every 56 days if it is permitted,” Dr. Jenkins said. “I have an O positive blood type and they need it a lot. It’s a universal blood type.”
Students, faculty and staff seemed relatively calm and willing when it came to donating. They went in, gave blood and came out, with a bandage around their arm, ready to take on the rest of the day. UNCP students, faculty and staff took the time out of their hectic day to donate blood because they recognize the importance of giving back.
“The need is constant,” said Donor Resources Development for the American Red Cross Erica Rosenberg.
Other students, faculty and staff came out just to support the cause. According to the Red Cross’ website someone needs blood every 60 seconds and the only way to give them that blood is through volunteers.
“The wrestling team made this drive possible,” Robeson County Manager for American Red Cross Patt Smartt said. “This drive is the largest in the county. Our goal is to get 165 units today, we are generally successful.”
It has been a huge success year after year. The event always manages to bring in plenty of donations of blood each year and some monetary donations to also help give back.
The Red Cross will be back on campus Dec. 2, Feb. 24 and April 28. Appointments made will be honored before walkins and can be made at www.membersforlife.org/ cbsr/schedule, clicking on “search by sponsor” and entering sponsor code “7838.”