Lizzie Duke, Reporter
The Cascade Regional Blood Services bus made an eight-hour stop at Pierce College Puyallup Oct. 7. In that time, 49 volunteers donated blood.
Between the students and staff who signed up beforehand, and the numerous walk-in volunteers, 24 people donated blood for the first time.
“I’m trying to do good deeds,” student Dexter Dan, who’s donated five times before, said.
Jessica Cannon, lead donor specialist for CRBS, said Pierce College Puyallup donates an average of 50 pints of blood each visit. Kylie Ada, the Office of Student Life wellness and outdoor activities coordinator, arranges these visits, which are three or four times a year, usually on the first Wednesday of the month. Between these visits, Pierce donates up to 200 pints of blood each year.
“My favorite part is talking to the donors because a lot of them have a reason for donating,” Mariah Bardole, CRBS nurse, said.
Bardole said that many of the volunteers have friends or family members who have needed blood donations. After seeing how necessary the donations are and what an impact volunteering makes, the people come in on their own free will hoping to save lives.
“I don’t really know why I like to donate blood,” student Rachel Miller said. “It’s really just if I can save someone’s life, I’d like to.”
After about one pint of blood is taken from the volunteer, it’s put into a cooler, sent to a lab and then sent to hospitals where it’s used to, as the CRBS motto goes, save lives.
According to CRBS, blood donors provide 100 percent of the community’s blood supply, 60 percent of which comes from school blood drives such as this one. Cannon said all the blood donated through the blood bus stays local. Most of it goes to MultiCare Health System and Franciscan Health System hospital and clinics in Pierce and south King counties.
The hope to save lives isn’t the only reason for donating.
“(I donate) mostly because the first time it was kind of fun,” Nathaneal Hollas, student and second time donor, said. “I could feel the blood moving through my body and usually you can’t feel that.”
Volunteers must be 18-years-old or older to donate. If a volunteer is 16 or 17 they can donate with parent or guardian written permission. Volunteers must weigh at least 110 pounds and blood pressure between 180/100 and 90/50. Blood can be donated every 56 days, about how often the blood bus comes to Pierce.
The next scheduled visit is Dec. 2. A sign-up sheet for Pierce students looking to donate will be available in C210 two weeks before the blood bus’s arrival.
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