October 19, 2015 ─ Arkansas Blood Institute encourages all healthy Mena area residents who are at least 16 years old* to go ‘Hog Wild’ and donate blood. A single donation can save as many as three local lives. A blood drive will take place at the Wal Mart Mena, 9 a.m. to 1:45 p.m., Saturday, October 31st.
Donors will receive Razorback red ‘Hog Wild’ T-shirts to honor them as invaluable team players in saving lives in our community this football season. Thanks to its volunteer donors, Arkansas Blood Institute exclusively provides every drop of blood needed by patients to 21 hospitals across the state.
“Someone needs blood every two seconds, and since blood can only be used for 42 days, we constantly need people to donate,” said Terry Ridenour, executive director, Arkansas Blood Institute’s Fort Smith area. “This ongoing need is why we are asking Mena area residents to come to this blood drive and give.”
Although all blood types are needed, those with O-negative type blood are especially encouraged to donate. According to AABB, those with O-negative blood type make up only nine percent of the national population. However, O-negative blood can be used in any emergency situation when a patient’s blood type has not yet been identified.
Through a special initiative to support the Global Blood Fund (GBF), any donor can forgo the T-shirt. In turn, funds so designated will be contributed to GBF, a nonprofit that provides blood center technology and supplies to struggling blood centers around the world so they can meet local needs through voluntary blood donation.
Donations can be made every 56 days and usually take about an hour. Appointments are not required but can be made at arkbi.org or by calling 877-340-8777.
*16 year olds must weigh at least 125 and provide signed parental permission; 17 year olds must weigh at least 125 pounds; 18+ year olds must weigh at least 110 pounds