Blood donor clinics generally fill up quickly in Steinbach with people who are eager to roll up their sleeves to give the gift of life.
In January, three clinics are scheduled and Brett Lawrence, Community Development Manager for Canadian Blood Services, says the need for blood does not take a holiday.
That means every donation is very important.
“Because it's the holiday season, people may not have blood donation on the top of mind,” Lawrence says. “We're also seeing a lot of cancellations across the country due to sick calls, it's cold and flu season right now, and then also just weather-related issues. We do have a national inventory, and especially Ontario and BC are being affected by winter storms right now. So, it's important that we collect blood in Manitoba to also support the national inventory as well,"
Regardless of the season, Lawrence says there are people across the country who need blood.
“The need for blood is constant,” he says. “And there's always going to be issues coming up where someone needs a transfusion. There's always going to be people undergoing cancer treatment, a leukemia patient could use up to 8 units a week for one week of their treatment.”
Lawrence adds that 50 units of blood could be needed for one person in a car accident.
Blood donor clinics are scheduled for January 2nd, 16th and 30th.
“Currently, the January 2nd one is completely booked, that's the one at the Steinbach Mennonite Church at 345 Loewen Boulevard. I really encourage folks that already have appointments to show up for their appointments because it's very important that we collect that blood that day,” he says. “Also keep an eye out for last minute cancellations. Because it is January 2nd, something could come up for folks.”
You can check blood.ca to find out detail of appointment openings.
The clinics on January 16th and 30th will be held at the Steinbach EMC on Main Street, and as of publication time, both of those clinics still had appointments available.
If you need to cancel your appointment, Lawrence encourages you to reschedule. By phoning in your cancellation, Lawrence says you are giving an opportunity to someone else.
“So, it’s really important that if you can't make your appointment, open that spot for someone else to come in and save a life.”
-With files from Michelle Sawatzky