The most important thing you can do this summer won't be going to the beach, taking a vacation, or having a barbeque - it will be donating blood.
After a long, cold winter, residents of the U.P. don't waste any time leaping into summer. Because summer weather has such a brief window in the U.P., we tend to try to cram a year's worth of living into a mere three months. With so much to do, and so little time, it's easy to put many things on hold.
One of those seems to be donating blood.
According to the Upper Peninsula Regional Blood Center and American Red Cross, blood supplies and donations tend to drop off during the summer months. Part of the reason is people are just too busy enjoying every moment of summer they can.
Although blood donations and supplies traditionally decrease, unfortunately the demand for blood does not.
Giving blood is easy. It only takes a brief time, and the help you provide by donating blood is enormous. It's not called the "gift of life" for nothing. The blood you donate may end up doing just that - saving a life.
Blood drives are routinely held throughout the U.P. by both the Red Cross and the Upper Peninsula Regional Blood Center. The use of the bloodmobile, a blood collection site on wheels, makes donating blood even more accessible.
According to officials, currently their is a particular need for O negative type blood.
Before you go on vacation, make a point to donate blood first. Summer doesn't mean the gift of life is needed any less.
For future blood drives or bloodmobile stops, look in the Daily Press. We make a point to publicize these worthwhile events when they are held.
Contact the local chapter of the Red Cross at 428-9357 or visit www.givebloodgivelife.org for more information. For information on the Upper Peninsula Blood Center, visit www.mgh.org/blood/blood.html. To donate at the Blood Center's Escanaba facility, call 786-8420 to set up an appointment.