Get your heart pumping and prevent a summer blood shortage

Red Cross

Chance at Shark Week merchandise package for those who come to give thanks to Discovery

By making and keeping blood and platelet donation appointments in July, donors can connect with patients through a lifesaving gift. To book a time to give, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

FINGER LAKES — The American Red Cross and Discovery are partnering for Shark Week and invite people to dive in to help save lives by giving blood or platelets in July. The Red Cross saw a steep drop in blood and platelet donations last month, and donors are asked to make appointments now to prevent a blood shortage this summer.

In June, the Red Cross collected approximately 12% fewer blood donations than needed – one of the largest monthly blood donation shortfalls in recent years. Regionally, 15% less donations were made than expected. When fewer people answer the call to donate, the blood supply shrinks – and that could mean blood products aren’t ready for hospital staff to reach for in emergencies.

Thanks to Discovery, all who come to give blood or platelets in July will automatically be entered for a chance to win an exclusive Shark Week merchandise package that includes:

  • Beach bike
  • Smokeless portable fire pit
  • Paddle board
  • Kayak
  • $500 gift card to put toward accessories

Those who come to give July 21-24 will get an exclusive Shark Week T-shirt from Discovery, while supplies last. Details are available at rcblood.org/sharkweek.

By making and keeping blood and platelet donation appointments in July, donors can connect with patients through a lifesaving gift. To book a time to give, download the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities in July:

  • July 15, 10:30 a.m. - 3 p.m., Watkins Glen Community Center, 155 S. Clute Park Drive
  • July 20, 12:30 p.m. - 6 p.m., Himrod Fire Department, 3530 Himrod Road
  • July 20, 1 p.m. - 6 p.m., Benton Fire Department, 932 State Route 14A
  • July 26, 2 p.m. - 7 p.m., Rushville United Methodist Church, 26 North Main St.
  • July 28, 11:45 a.m. - 5:45 p.m., Hammondsport Fire Department, 8521 State Route 54
  • July 28, 1:30 p.m. - 6:30 p.m., Branchport Fire Department, 3686 State Route 54A

How to donate blood

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enable the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

Amplify your impact − volunteer!

Another way to support the lifesaving mission of the Red Cross is to become a volunteer blood donor ambassador at Red Cross blood drives. Blood donor ambassadors help greet, check-in and thank blood donors to ensure they have a positive donation experience.

For more information and to apply for a either position, contact RecruitWNY@redcross.org, call 585-241-4400 or 607-785-7207 or visit https://www.redcross.org/volunteertoday.