American Red Cross urgently needs blood donations before summer ends

The American Red Cross has several blood drives listed for the southwest Georgia area in the coming weeks. The Red Cross is urging eligible donors to give in the final weeks of summer.

ATLANTA — With many regular donors delaying giving to take final summer vacations and prepare for school to start, the American Red Cross has an emergency need for blood and platelet donations to help end a summer blood shortage.

Red Cross officials said that, while thousands of donors have rolled up a sleeve this summer, blood and platelet donations are not keeping pace with patient needs. More donations are needed to replenish the blood supply and be prepared for patient emergencies.

With the help of a $1 million donation from Amazon, the Red Cross is thanking those who help overcome the shortage by coming to give through Aug. 29 with a $5 Amazon.com Gift Card via email.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities in southwest Georgia include:

♦ Monday, First Baptist Church, 204 Railroad Ave. East, Pearson;

♦ Tuesday, noon to 6 p.m. First United Methodist Church, 107 W. 12th St., Tifton;

♦ Thursday, 2 to 7 p.m., Byne Memorial Baptist Church, 2832 Ledo Road, Albany;

♦ Thursday, 1:30 to 5:30 p.m., Tift Avenue Church of God, 2220 N. Tift Ave., Tifton;

♦ Aug.29, 12:30 to 5:30 p.m., Tift Regional Event Center, 1657 S. Carpenter Road, Tifton;

♦ Aug. 30, 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Albany Dougherty County Government Center, 222 Pine Ave;

♦ Sept. 3, 3 to 7 p.m., Margaret Jones Library, 205 E. Pope St., Sylvester;

♦ Sept. 5, 2 to 7 p.m., Leesburg Library, 245 Walnut Ave., South, Sylvester;

♦ Sept. 9, noon to 5 p.m., Porterfield Memorial United Methodist Church, 2200 Dawson Road, Albany;

♦ Sept. 10, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College on the Square, 31 E. Central Ave., Moultrie;

♦ Sept. 10, 1 to 6 p.m., Cordele Community Clubhouse, 108 15th Ave. Cordele;

♦ Sept. 11, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Dougherty Comprehensive High School, 1800 Pearce Ave., Albany;

Sept. 13, 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Westover Comprehensive High School, 2600 Partridge Lane, Albany; and♦

♦ Sept. 13, 1 to 5 p.m., Tift Regional Event Center.

Make an appointment to donate blood by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting www.redcrossblood.org, calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or enabling the Blood Donor Skill on any Alexa Echo device. Those who donated blood earlier this summer may be eligible to give again.

Blood can be safely given every 56 days, and Power Red donations can be given every 112 days.

All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license, or two other forms of identification, are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age, 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 redcrossblood.org/rapidpass or use the Blood Donor App.

Restrictions apply to the gift card. See amazon.com/gc-legal. More information and details are available at redcrossblood.org/together.

The Red Cross is a not-for-profit that shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters, supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood, teaches skills that save lives, provides international humanitarian aid, and supports military members and their families. For more information, visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or on Twitter at @RedCross.

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