Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood and for every pint of blood donated, up to three lives can be saved, according to the American Red Cross.
On Sept. 19, for the first time this academic school year, Red Cross workers were back at Castleton University for yet another blood drive.
While some people sat around a pink-clothed table drinking their water and stuffing their faces with chocolate chip cookies after donating, other students and community members inside the 1787 Room were still in the process of donating blood.
Black cushioned chairs covered the majority of the 1787 Room while Red Cross employees wearing bright red scrubs attended to the needs of generous donors. Some donors did not mind the process, while others refused to look at the needles in their arms, paying more attention to the squishy stress-relief ball in their opposite hand.
And while some people have very personal reasons for donating, others just do it because they feel it is a good deed.
“I like donating because my blood type is O-negative, I know my blood is important so I should share it,” said sophomore Sam Lewis.
Fellow sophomore Fisher Clements said he donates just because he believes in doing a good deed when the opportunity presents itself.
“It’s a good thing to do. It’s the right thing to do. I don’t really like anything about it, it’s just rewarding.”
But not everybody feels they are the right person for the job.
“I feel like I would be one of those people that gets really light headed and passes out,” said senior Aminah Orogi.
Ceil Hunt, president of the Alumni Association, helps oversea the blood drive. Some of her responsibilities consist of making sure donors have food and drinks, finding volunteers, advertising the event by posting signs, making flyers, setting up billboards and even helping with the set up.
“Thankfully, the football team helped us set up this morning,” Hunt said with a smile on her face.
Director of Community Service Crispin White plays a significant roll in the blood drive event. The American Red Cross contacts White every summer to set up dates throughout the academic year to come to the university.
“We try to make this a community event,” White said.
This is done in various ways like getting the Castleton Women’s Club to help find volunteers and even having the Castleton football team help set up in the morning and break down in the evening.
Falling short of their goal of 87 pints of blood, the Red Cross finished the blood drive with 59 pints from 73 participating donors, according to Red Cross leaders. The Red Cross leaders say they look forward to increasing both the number of participants and the number of pints collected when they come back to Castleton and take over President Dave Wolk’s house during the next blood drive on Nov. 29. They will also be returning to campus once in February and once in April.