MILWAUKEE -- Despite the hectic holiday season, hundreds of people are taking time out to donate blood -- and you are being urged to do so as well.
'Tis the season to give back, and what better thing to give than the gift of life at the BloodCenter of Wisconsin’s 16th annual Season of Giving Blood Drive.
The annual event will take place on Wednesday, December 28th, and Thursday, December 29th from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., at the Peck Welcome Center of the Milwaukee County Zoo — 10001 W. Bluemound Road, Milwaukee.
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12-year-old Seraphine from Oconomowoc knows the benefits firsthand. He's battling leukemia and receives blood transfusions and platelets that help his body recover from chemotherapy and fight cancer.
"I was in the middle of fifth grade when we found out my white blood cell count was 0.2." said Seraphine.
Now, Seraphine is showing support and gratitude to the blood donors that have given him a second chance at a healthy, happy life.
Donors at the Season of Giving blood drive will receive holiday thank you cards designed by Seraphine himself.
BloodCenter officials hope to see more than 600 donors during the event.
"During the winter, we do tend to see a drop off of blood donations. People get busy. There's cold and flu going around and people have a lot of distractions," said Faye Spano with the BloodCenter of Wisconsin.
Donations of all blood types are needed, but there is an especially great need for O negative donors. O negative blood is of critical importance, as it is the universal donor and the blood type.
"But O negative blood, especially right now, is very important to us. It's the universal blood type -- that means it can be administered to any patient in a trauma situation," said Spano.
Attempting donors will also receive:
- Complimentary zoo admission on the day of the drive
- A complimentary adult zoo ticket for a future date
- Free parking
- Free childcare
Anyone 16 or older who is in general good health and meets eligibility requirements is encouraged to donate blood. Parental consent is required for 16 year olds to donate. The entire process takes about an hour. Donors should bring a photo ID that includes birth date.