September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
You can bring hope to a child’s life in the time it might take to eat lunch with a friend.
By donating blood through the American Red Cross, you can help provide the blood some children may need for their ongoing cancer care. With September being Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, blood donors are encouraged to make and keep appointments and help children beat serious disease.
“Donated blood and platelets can play an enormous role in cancer care and treatment,” said Sharyn Whitman, CEO for the Indiana-Ohio Blood Services Region of the American Red Cross. “Chances are, there’s a child or a family waiting for the gift you can give.”
Transfusions of red cells and platelets can help save a patient’s life, or dramatically improve their quality of life from day-to-day. Leukemia and other cancers can cause anemia and internal bleeding, chemo and radiation can lower blood counts, and cancer-related surgeries can result in blood loss.
According to the National Cancer Institute, about 10,400 children under the age of 15 are diagnosed with cancer in a typical year. Of those childhood cancer patients, about one-third will have some form of leukemia. Many forms of leukemia respond to current medical care, including the most prevalent: acute lymphoblastic leukemia, or ALL.
“When you give blood, you give hope,” said Whitman. “We often hear from families who say that because blood was there, their child has a chance to grow up and enjoy every moment. Just think of the power your donation can bring.”
UPCOMING AMERICAN RED CROSS BLOOD DRIVES IN YOUR AREA:
- Friday, Sept. 16, from noon until 5 p.m. at McAfee Animal Hospital, located at 651 Eastport Centre Drive in Valparaiso. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule your blood donation appointment.
- Friday, Sept. 16 from 2 p.m. until 7 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in the Fellowship Hall, located at 2637 McCool Road in Portage.
- Monday, Sept. 19, from 1 p.m. until 7 p.m. at St. Teresa of Avila in the Catholic Student Center, located at 1604 Lincolnway in Valparaiso.
- Monday, Sept. 19, from noon until 3 p.m. at Porter Portage Hospital Campus, located at 3630 Willowcreek Road in Portage.
- Tuesday, Sept. 20, from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Faith Memorial Lutheran Church, located at 753 N. Calumet in Valparaiso.
- Wednesday, Sept. 21, from 2 p.m. until 7 p.m. at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in the Community Room, located at 509 W. Division Road in Valparaiso. This blood drive is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus.
- Thursday, Sept. 22, from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. at Walmart, located at 3400 E. Morthland Drive in Valparaiso.
- Friday, Sept. 23, from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. at Portage Avenue Baptist Church in the Sanctuary Room, located at 6605 Portage Ave. in Portage.
How to Donate Blood
To schedule an appointment to donate please call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org for more information. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in Indiana and Ohio), meet weight and height requirements (110 pounds or more, depending on their height) and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. Please bring your Red Cross blood donor card or other form of positive ID when you come to donate.
About the American Red Cross
The Indiana-Ohio Blood Services Region serves northern and central Indiana and northwestern Ohio, and needs to collect about 500 units of blood a day to meet patient need in more than 60 hospitals. In addition to providing blood to our community, the American Red Cross also provides relief to victims of disaster, trains millions in lifesaving skills, serves as a communication link between U.S. military members and their families, and assists victims of international disasters or conflicts.