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UCPS blood drives can save thousands of lives

Porter Ridge High School Principal Sam Basden, at right, accepts the Red Cross Community Partner Award on behalf of his school, presented by Jillian Smyth, Donor Recruitment Director from the American Red Cross.

Union County Public Schools principals were recognized today (Sept. 5, 2013) by the American Red Cross for donating a total of 2,053 pints of blood, potentially saving 6,159 lives.

Sheila Crunkleton, Community Chapter Executive with the American Red Cross, congratulated principals and the school system at large, stating that this is up from last year’s donation of 1,876 units.

Crunkleton and Jillian Smyth, Donor Recruitment Director from the American Red Cross, presented 23 principals with certificates in recognition of the school system’s ongoing efforts and support of the Red Cross.

Crunkleton said that the donation of 2,053 units of life-saving blood collected in these school blood drives accounted for half of all blood collected in Union County last year. Basically, this is the case every year, she said.

Twelve elementary schools hosted blood drives: Benton Heights Elementary School of the Arts, Porter Ridge Elementary, Unionville Elementary, Weddington Elementary School, Poplin Elementary, Western Union Elementary, Rocky River Elementary, Stallings Elementary, Waxhaw Elementary, New Salem Elementary, Wesley Chapel Elementary and Prospect Elementary. Prospect Elementary led all elementary schools with 70 units of life-saving blood collected.

Three middle schools: Cuthbertson Middle, Parkwood Middle and Piedmont Middle also held blood drives. Cuthbertson Middle collected the most among the middle schools with 30 units collected.

Eight of the county’s high schools held blood drives, with four collecting well over 200 units each. Participating from the high school level was: Cuthbertson High, Forest Hills High, Parkwood High, Piedmont High, Porter Ridge High, Marvin Ridge High, Sun Valley High and Weddington High. Porter Ridge High School took top honors for collecting 279 units of life-saving blood.

"Our Interact Club leads this initiative," said Porter Ridge High School Principal Sam Basden. "We do it twice a year. We probably have 50 student volunteers work when we do the blood drive. I'm very proud that the students and staff at Porter Ridge are so eager to give back to the community."

According to the American Red Cross, someone in the U.S. needs blood every two seconds, with more than 44,000 blood donations needed every day. A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 pints of blood. The American Red Cross supplies approximately 40 percent of the nation's blood supply, providing blood for patients in nearly 3,000 hospitals across the U.S.

Written by: Deb Coates Bledsoe, UCPS Communications Coordinator
Posted: Sep 05, 2013 by Debra Bledsoe

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