School-wide blood drive leads to lives saved by donors

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School-wide blood drive leads to lives saved by donors

Senior Jessa Melvin helps the cause by donating her blood during the school-wide drive in the auxiliary gym.

Senior Jessa Melvin helps the cause by donating her blood during the school-wide drive in the auxiliary gym.

Bailie Rosser

Senior Jessa Melvin helps the cause by donating her blood during the school-wide drive in the auxiliary gym.

Bailie Rosser

Bailie Rosser

Senior Jessa Melvin helps the cause by donating her blood during the school-wide drive in the auxiliary gym.

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Students at the Broken Arrow high school were pumped for the blood drive, which took place on Oct. 21. The event ran from 7:45 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Although the event was held in the practice gym, students decorated the student union to publicize the event. With Halloween coming up, the timing of the blood drive could not have been better. The walls were covered in black paper with red hand prints and promotional phrases on them. Fake spiders and spider webs hung from the ceiling and posters lined the walls. One poster read, “Always give 100%, unless you’re giving blood.” Leadership students created some hashtags to accompany the event: #BAdblood #Leader4Liters #Bpositive. Skylar Johnson is a senior who helped out with the promotion of the blood drive.

“I helped decorate the student union and that was fun,” Johnson said.

Everyone who participated in the blood drive had different motivations for doing so. Some NHS students did it for volunteer hours, other students might have done it just to get free food and a free shirt; however, students primarily did it in hopes of helping save lives. Many students had participated in a school sponsored blood drive in the past, and were looking forward to participating again.

“I’ve always wanted to donate blood, and getting to do it for the third time makes me really happy,” junior Noah Osborne said. “I’m happy to do anything I can to make a difference.”

Unfortunately, not everyone qualified to give blood. Donors had to have been between the ages of 16 and 18. Depending on their height, male donors must have weighed between 110 and 118 pounds, and female donors must have weighed between 110 and 133 pounds. Before a student could give blood, their iron levels were tested. If they were too low for the American Red Cross’s standards, then they were considered anemic and were unable to donate. If a person did qualify to donate, then the school made it easy to do so. Students went to donate blood during a time that worked best for them during the school day. It is because of this convenience that most students haven’t donated outside of school sponsored blood drives.

“I’ve never found time to give blood outside of school, but I try to always participate in the blood drives at school,” senior Breanna Tilton said.

While donating blood only took about ten minutes, the entire process took about an hour. First, donors signed in and read through a booklet of information on giving blood. Then they were asked a series of questions about their health and personal information. After that, their finger was pricked and their blood was tested to make sure their iron levels were high enough to donate. If they weren’t, then they were sent back to class, otherwise, they continued on with the process. Once they were hooked up to the IV, all that was left to do was wait. To make sure that everyone was in good shape when they left, food and beverages were provided after donation.

Although giving blood may have left donors feeling woozy, hopefully they also felt good for helping to save the lives of those who needed them.

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