This is the fourth and final blood drive of the year, but it comes at a critical time. As colleges and workplaces start gearing up for vacations during Thanksgiving and Christmas, the number of blood donations from these sources decreases, leaving Florida Blood Services to cope with the supply that they have.
After donation, each pint can be broken down into three different elements – red blood cells, plasma and platelets. These elements, frozen, can be stored. Plasma, used to help burn victims recover, can be stored for up to a year.
“So far this year, we have collected 179 units of blood,” says Church spokesperson Pat Harney, “and when you realize that one pint of blood can save up to three lives, this really adds up. Our Volunteer Ministers (VM’s) have been participating in these blood drives for the last few years and we are very honored to have them.”
Ms. Harney cites the Volunteer Minister’s work in international relief efforts – VMs from Tampa have assisted fire fighters, National Guard, Red Cross and other groups at disasters ranging from 9/11 to Tsunamis in India and hurricanes in Florida.
“They are a group dedicated to helping mankind in the oldest of religious traditions. These drives with Florida Blood Services are just a portion of what we do to continue that,” said Ms. Harney.
People wishing to donate need to be at least 16 years old, in good health and weigh over 110 pounds.
“It only takes 20 minutes to a half hour to donate,” continued Ms. Harney, “and it is something that can really make a difference in a person’s life.”
Per the Florida Blood Services website, 90% of the population in the United States will need blood, plasma or platelets in the course of their lives, only 30% of those who are eligible to give blood, ever do.
Ms. Harney says that the blood drive is open to the public and the donors can be of any denomination. She added, “The Founder of Scientology, L. Ron Hubbard said that ‘Life is a group effort. None survive alone.’ We - and I am talking about all humanity - can make a difference, one person at a time. ”
If you wish to donate, please contact 727-467-6860. For more information