The Red Cross: taking 30 minutes to save three lives


Cases of bottled water stacked up outside the UB Ballroom beside a sign that read "Thank you for coming to donate blood" on Wednesday.
The Red Cross blood drive was open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for students and faculty who had signed up to give blood and for those who walked by and felt the urge to donate. Each person who donated blood will save three lives.
Jane Millspaugh, a team supervisor for Red Cross, said the organization likes to go to college campuses like DePauw for drives.
"Most of the students like to do volunteer community service, and this is a good way to give back," Millspaugh said.
Millspaugh said that this particular blood drive is significant since the winter holidays are approaching soon.
"We always have an increased need during the holiday season for blood," Millspaugh said.
This increased need stems from the fact that a lot of people take time off from work during the time of the holidays, and are likely to be busier than normal to donate blood. Blood drives around this time, like the one held at DePauw, give the staff an opportunity to replenish their blood supply.
"Blood only is good on the shelf for 42 days, so it's perishable," Millspaugh said. "We constantly have a need for blood."
Millspaugh said the goal of this drive was to have approximately 50 people sign up to donate, not counting the students that walked in without an appointment.
"We always have a good turnout here," Millspaugh said of DePauw. "The students are very aware of the need for blood donation."
Millspaugh, who has been involved with Red Cross about 10 years and helps with three or four drives each week, said the best part of her involvement is working with the donors.
She hopes that the donors from DePauw feel that the staff are caring, professional, and knowledgeable, and that the donors will want to make blood donation a part of their routine.
Junior Kenisha White chose to give blood because a fellow friend asked her to volunteer. White thinks it's important for college students to have an impact on others in this way.
Since she had never donated blood before, she wasn't completely sure if she would be able to. There are various rules for being a blood donor, and they were posted on the "thank you" sign in front of the UB Ballroom, illustrated by a drawing of a stop sign.
Senior Stephen Buchholz has given blood multiple times, and "absolutely" plans to donate again.
"I will give. ... until I die, or for some certain reason a condition arises where I'd be eliminated," Buchholz said.
Buchholz thinks it's important for college-aged students to give blood because they are one of the most fertile populations to donate, as they are generally the most healthy and can recover faster than someone who is older. Buchholz also knows from personal experience that it is very important to donate blood, especially since he is helping someone in some way while doing so.
"When it only takes 30 minutes out of my day to have a positive effect on someone," Buchholtz said. "It's something that you really can't just say no to."