Judy Green moved swiftly from chair to chair, each one seated with a different donor. Before long, her name would again be called out by a person clothed in red and black, drawing her attention to another chair with another donor in it. This process repeated over the course of almost six hours as students, faculty, and community members came forward to donate blood.
On Sept. 18, Castleton University hosted the American Red Cross in the Campus Center. Students, faculty, and community members turned out to donate blood to the organization.
“The turnout has been actually quite good,” Green said, who is a collections technician for the Red Cross. “We have sixty-two appointments today. Only about three haven’t shown up, and we had three more walk-ins, so that has kept us right where we need to be,” she said.
At 1:30 p.m., the Red Cross collected 21 pints of blood, having started at 10:30 that morning. The drive was scheduled to go on until 4:00 that afternoon.
“On average, we’ll probably get somewhere between 45 and 50 pints,” Green said. “We’re aiming for 64.”
According to an article posted on the Red Cross website from July 5 2017, there were 61,000 fewer donations in May and June, resulting in a shortage of blood.
“Typically, the summer is always a tough season, because everyone’s on vacation,” Green said. “We always are at critical need in the summer, but more so now with Irma and Harvey, because those states aren’t able to collect blood.”
But according to Green, because of two devastating hurricanes Harvey and Irma, the Red Cross has been able to go over their goal on several occasions.
Castleton community members had multiple reasons to give blood that afternoon. According to sophomore Dara Davison, the reason she gave blood was specifically because of her blood type.
“I found that (I have the) second rarest blood type, and that makes me want to give even more,” Davison said.
Davison has B- type blood, which according to the Red Cross’ website, only 4.4 percent of Americans have. The rarest blood type is AB-, which only 1.6 percent of the population has.
“I’m a nursing student, so I really love doing everything I can,” Raegan Kobbe, a sophomore nursing student said. “I’ve given one time in the past.”
Though she has attempted, Kobbe has not been able to donate a few times in the past, and has been turned away because of low iron in her blood.
“I still try every time,” she said.
The next blood drive at Castleton University is scheduled for Dec. 20 2017 from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Appointments can be made at redcrossblood.org.