Blood Drive Mission

blooddrivejeanAround 1994 or 1995, the Stewardship Committee was challenged to come up with a new program that did not involve money. After a little brainstorming, John Bruette suggested hosting a blood drive. While John has been a blood donor since age 18, it was the memory of his father receiving blood products during a hospital stay that prompted the suggestion.

John contacted the Red Cross to see what needed to be done to host a blood drive. A meeting with a Red Cross coordinator was set up, along with a site visit to determine if the church had sufficient space to host a blood drive. The Red Cross was very pleased with the space in the Friendship room and a schedule was set to host the first drive. The church expansion allowed the Red Cross to setup extra beds for double red cell donations.

In the early years, recruiting volunteers included people to bring baked goods. Now the Red Cross provides all the treats (except when Darlene and John bake). Thank you Keebler for the donations! Today it takes about 12 people to host a blood drive: unloaders, registration, donor room, canteen, loaders and coordinators. Fred Sage, Michael Zeter and John and Darlene Bruette have served as coordinators. Watch the bulletins and newsletters for dates and opportunities to volunteer.

From 2006 to present, approximately 1,550 units of blood have been donated at St John’s blood drives. Each unit can help up to three people. Currently the church is hosting three blood drives a year on Saturday mornings from 7 to 11 a.m. Each drive averages 60 units of blood products.

The following are some statistics provided by the Red Cross:
  • Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood
  • More than 44,000 blood donations are needed every day
  • A total of 30 million blood components are transfused each year in the U.S. (2006)
  • The number of blood donations collected in the U.S. in a year: 16 million (2006)
  • The number of blood donors in the U.S. in a year: 9.5 million (2006)
  • The number of patients who receive blood in the U.S. in a year: 5 million (2006)