College students may be tempted to think they don’t have time for community service, but this week saving three lives is as simple as sitting in a chair for half an hour.
The familiar red and white Blood Connection buses will be parked on campus Monday to kick off this year’s first Community Service Council blood drive.
The Blood Connection’s motto for this drive is “Connect Life.” According to Christina Wornom, the CSC member overseeing the drive, this motto refers to the invisible connection donors have with the people whose lives they save.
A few students who have donated blood in the past offered some tips for first-time donors.
“Drink plenty of water and eat before you go,” advised Emily Barr, a junior apparels, textiles and design major. Because blood is more than 80 percent water, drinking water will plump up your veins, which will help the Blood Connection personnel locate your veins more easily.
“Just enjoy yourself,” said Carrie Hill, a junior English major. “Don’t panic about the needle; you barely feel it. Concentrate on the free food you’ll get at the end.”
The Blood Connection will provide donors with a sugary snack and drink after donating to prevent faintness, and a T-shirt as a token of appreciation.
Finally, be ready to give answers about your health condition before donating and avoid exercising for 24 hours afterward.
In addition to saving three lives, giving blood is a great way to live out this year’s theme of Walking in the Spirit. The drive itself supports the “overarching theme of thinking beyond ourselves,” Wornom remarked. “Not only does [donating blood] give a great testimony to the community, but it also gives you a chance to give to a cause bigger than yourself.”
The drive will run from Oct. 6 through 10, and will be available after chapel until 7 p.m.
You can either sign up ahead of time online, which will reduce your waiting time, or just walk over to the blood buses when you have a free half-hour.
Get involved in the blood drive and take a little time to “Connect Life.”