During Childhood Cancer Awareness Month this September, the American Red Cross encourages eligible donors to give blood to support kids, teens and young adults with cancer, as well as others in need of transfusions.
According to the National Cancer Institute, more than 15,000 children and adolescents in the U.S. are diagnosed with cancer each year. Childhood cancer patients may need blood products on a regular basis during chemotherapy, surgery or treatment for complications.
Blood and platelet donors of all blood types, especially type O negative and O positive, are urgently needed to replenish the blood supply following a critical summer blood shortage, a news release stated.
As a thank you, those who come to give blood or platelets Friday, Aug. 31-Sept. 4, will receive a Red Cross aluminum water bottle, while supplies last.
Make an appointment to donate by downloading the free American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting www.RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).
Upcoming blood donation opportunities
• Aitkin: Noon-6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4, Aitkin VFW Post No. 1727, 36558 410th Ave.
• Crosby: 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, and 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Friday, Sept. 7, Cuyuna Regional Medical Center, 320 E. Main St.
• Crosslake: Noon-6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 6, Crosslake Lutheran Church, 35960 County Highway 66.
• Deerwood: Noon-6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 4, Deerwood Auditorium, 23770 E. Forest Road.
• Emily: Noon-6 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5, Emily City Hall, 39811 Highway 6.
• Nisswa: Noon-6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 13, Lutheran Church of Cross, 5064 County Highway 13.
How to donate blood
A blood donor card or driver's license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years old 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 www.RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.