For more than 40 years, Jasnuary has been recognized as National Blood Donor Month. To help ensure a lifesaving supply of blood, Vitalant (formerly United Blood Services) has joined other blood centers around the country, stressing the importance of donating blood.

Every two seconds, someone needs blood. Each day more than 250 volunteer blood donors are needed in this region to save or sustain the lives of patients. Keeping a fresh supply of blood on hand gives them the chance to fight diseases like cancer or leukemia and survive the trauma of accidents.

“We asked a donor, a young man, why he gives blood so  consistently three or four times a year,” said Rob Miller, manager with Vitalant. “He said, ‘It feels so good to save someone’s life. Why would you do it just once?’ I can’t argue with that!”

Patients call donors like him heroes. Anyone healthy enough to give blood can be a hero to area patients .The process takes less than an hour, and Vitalant provides a free total cholesterol test at each donation.

The next opportunity in Walker is at the Community Church of Walker, Jan. 23 from 1:15-5:15 p.m.

Make an appointment to give blood at www.vitalant.org or call Bev Meyer, coordinator, at 547-2038. Donors also earn points in Vitalant’s Donor Reward.

Volunteer blood donors must be at least age 16, weight a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. Additional height/weight requirements apply to donors age 22 and younger, and donors who are age 16 must have signed permission from a parent or guardian.

For more information, visit www.vitalant.org

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