Culver's of Valparaiso hosted a blood drive with the Porter County Chapter of the American Red Cross Friday, March 28. Although originally slated to run from 2-6 pm, it was extended until 7 pm because of donor interest! In exchange for successfully donating a pint of blood, participants received a pint of Culver's famous frozen custard. Can you imagine a more delicious way to recuperate than eating some delicious frozen custard? From quite a bit of blood giving experience, I can tell you that this is one of the best ways I've ever imagined!
This event celebrates March as Red Cross Month! In addition to hosting the blood drive, Culver's has also been fielding donor appointments and taking monetary donations throughout the month of March. Giving back to the community is clearly important to our Culver's. The turnout was astounding! People poured onto the bus.
Drives such as these are important not only to our community, but to those around us. Blood donations are of vital importance to medical professionals and our neighbors all around! Without the gracious donation of blood and platelets, many people involved in accidents, requiring surgeries, and needing innumerable medical interventions would lose all hope.
"If every person that could give blood would give blood, we would never have a shortage," commented Angela Fox, Volunteer Coordinator and Office Manager of the Porter Chapter of the American Red Cross.
This event is good for all involved – rallying together to help potential medical emergencies is something that any of us can do! If you're unable to donate yourself, you're able to spread the "good news" when you hear a drive will be taking place. You're able to encourage your friends, loved ones, children, and parents who are capable of donating to head out to donate.
"It wasn't as bad as I thought. I was terrified of needles at first, but that really wasn't as bad as I expected. [People who donate] will definitely be able to help out others in the community, soldiers – I have military background in my family – so anything to help with anybody, actually. It gives the community the opportunity to come out here, get some yummy ice cream or dinner, and help out," said Wendy Beam of her first time donating blood.
I always think that blood drives and donation events like this bring out the best in people. Donors often become a bit weak or lightheaded, making a momentary sacrifice for the people around them. The people who benefit from these donations are countless. Lives depend on this.
"People need blood. I'm glad to do it,"Carol Funkhouser said with a smile.
Now, you might have missed this particular "Give a pint, get a pint" event at our beloved Culver's, but there are opportunities to give blood so often. This particular drive was held aboard a bus, which was really cool to experience, complete with bottled waters, snacks, and coupons to redeem that free pint!
To learn more about blood needs, donation, uses, and more, visit www.redcrossblood.org. On the Red Cross site, you'll also find plenty of information regarding where upcoming drives will be held and how to schedule an appointment – online or by telephone.
So go ahead, stop by Culver's and donate a bit of money, keep an eye out for blood drives in our area, and give what you can because blood gives life.