By Tali Sorets
Collecting 37 units of blood, the Blood Drive on March 1 surpassed the amount of blood collected at the last drive by seven units. According to Jaya Aiyer ’15, the blood drive, organized by Jaya, Nurse Julie Lindstrom, Dilly Sanborn-Marsh ’13, Nicko Bernier ’16, and Lucia Gayley ’16, was a huge success.
“It went really well,” said Jaya. “We had a ton of donations from both teachers and students. Last year, we had [fewer] teachers, but this year, people from the Middle School came up [to donate] as well.”
Nurse Julie said, “The school interest was quite high. I am really proud of our community for being so generous.”
According to Jaya, the increased interest allowed the drive to continue after school ended.
“We went an hour after school ended so that increased significantly the numbers of donors that we had, and we actually had to turn away some people,” she said. “I expected there to be about the same amount [of people] that we had last year, but this time we went much further [even though] we didn’t have that much time to campaign for [the Blood Drive].”
This year, Red Cross needed A-, B-, 0+, and 0- type blood. Emails were sent out and flyers hung throughout the school, and 47 people signed up to donate, though 17 people were turned away because of various restrictions.
According to students, donors gave for a multitude of reasons.
“My parents have always donated blood, and I just wanted to try it out,” said donor August Lin ’14. “I didn’t get a chance last time because [the drive] was during football season, so I decided to try it out. This time wasn’t bad, and I’ll probably donate next time.”
Mike Harris ’15 said, “I feel I have enough blood, and if I don’t use some of mine, I might as well give it to someone who will.”
With its own staff and equipment, the Red Cross organized the Community Room, though student volunteers filtered in to help at their available free blocks. All donors received snacks, stress balls in the shape of a blood drop, and beverages.
The process was simple and rewarding, according to August.
“This was my first time donating blood, and [the staff] was really helpful. They calmed me down and made sure I was okay after the blood drive,” said August.
According to Carolyn Curry ’13, the inconveniences of the act of giving were outweighed by the benefits of the donation.
“I had to wait a pretty long time, but in the end, it was worth it,” Carolyn said.
Blood is sent to the Massachusetts Red Cross Blood Bank. Each unit (a pint) of blood saves three lives, so this effort will help 111 people in need.