Blood shortages prompt NIU blood drives

By Terri Sorrentino

Blood shortages across the nation prompted NIU organizations to support National Blood Donor Month by sponsoring four campus blood drives.

Heartland Blood Centers in Aurora is working with NIU and setting up the mobile sites at several campus locations.

Sheri Ransford, an area representative for Heartland Blood Centers, said donations have been down and there is a shortage of blood.

“Because of the flu, people cannot donate,” Ransford said.

She said Heartland Blood Centers is hoping to reach the goal of 324 pints of blood from the drives at NIU.

NIU has worked with Heartland Blood Centers before. Each year about 3,500 units of blood come from NIU donors, Ransford said. Heartland Blood Centers sponsors 50 NIU campus blood drives each year.

In order to gain more participation from students, Stevenson Towers North is sponsoring a competition among the floors.

Ann Williams, senior staff representative for STN, said the residence hall is sponsoring a pizza party for the floor with the most donors.

“The winning floor will receive the Golden Heart Award from Heartland Blood Centers,” Williams said. “The floor will be recognized with a picture and display in the lobby.”

Faculty and staff are also getting involved with donations.

The Library Association is sponsoring a drive at Founders Memorial Library. A representative, Gelina Pinion, said all library staff and faculty were asked to donate. She said she hopes to have between 60 and 70 donors.

All interested in donating blood can come to one of the blood drives this week. They will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 21, in the staff lounge of the library between 1 and 5 p.m. and at STN between 2:30 and 7 p.m.

Also, on Wednesday, Jan. 22, the drives will be at the Holmes Student Center in the Capitol Room from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and at STN between 2:30 and 7 p.m.