10.16.2019 - 4:29 PM - Vivian Gehring
Since October 2017, Prentice High School Student Council has helped employees of the Red Cross host the Blood Drive in the PSD Middle School Gym. The members of Student Council help by scheduling all of the appointments and signing in the donors. They help set up the blood drive when it starts, along with setting out treats for the blood donors and making food for the Red Cross workers. When the blood drive is finished, Student Council also works to help take it down. Student Council members, volunteer both their time and space to make the drive possible. Jacqueline Franzoi, PSD School Counselor and the Student Council Advisor, is proud of them, and she feels that the project is a good way for students to gain experience while doing something good, noting that, “This is a good community and outreach project. It teaches students the importance of leadership and helping others.”
While Student Council helps organize and run the blood drive, many additional students of Prentice High School take part in giving blood each year. The amount of students participating in the blood drive as of May 2019, was between 15 to 20 students. In the previous year, that amount was fewer than six. Some students who did not give blood said that they didn’t give blood because they were afraid of either needles, blood, or the side effects. Additionally, other students were unable to give blood due to certain requirements that are needed to be reached. The donor must be in good health, at least 16 years of age with a parent's permission, weigh at least 110 pounds, and have not donated blood in the last 56 days. These are a few of the main requirements for donating.
As the Prentice community is proud of their blood drive, most people may not truly understand how much the donated blood helps those who are in need of it. According to the American Red Cross website, approximately three lives are saved with each blood bag that is donated. It is well established that every two seconds someone in the United States needs donated blood. Although many may feel intimidated by the needles and the small physical that is taken before the blood gets drawn, the Red Cross employees are known to be friendly and welcoming to all the patients. One former student of Prentice High School stated that, “They walked you through everything they were doing or going to do and kept checking in at every part of the process.”
The American Red Cross workers who staff the blood drive are usually nurses and other healthcare professionals.
Much like the students who had concerns and decided not to donate, a fair amount of students who did donate blood for the first time said that they were mostly nervous of the needles along with the thought of blood, but, after they donated, most students said that they had a good feeling about doing something positive that could help someone else.
PHS Student Council and the American Red Cross plan to do it again in the spring on May 6.