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Santa’s Community Blood Center

Santa’s Community Blood Center

Join Us on the Nice List. Donate Blood.

During a month that’s filled with so much gift giving, The Blood Connection wants to thank our loyal donors by giving them a fun, festive, holiday shirt that makes it obvious that they’re lifesavers. It’s Santa approved!

Through December 24, all donors at our centers will receive a special “Ugly Christmas Sweater” t-shirt in addition to their choice of a $20 Amazon or $20 VISA card. The shirts are while supplies last, so hurry in before they’re gone!

To our donors, thank you. Thank you. Thank you!

QUICK FACTS
-One donation can save up to 3 lives
-Someone needs blood every 2 seconds.
-1 in 7 people entering a hospital will need blood.

If you’ve donated whole blood before, you know this is worth your time! Feel free to enjoy your favorite TV shows and snacks on us! Donations can be made at a TBC Center. Please call your local center or 864-751-1168 with any questions or to make an appointment. Appointments are recommended but not required.

MORE INFO: Click here for a little more explanation about what donation type is best for your blood type.

Centers are open M-F 7a-7p and on the weekends 7-5pm. Blood donors must be healthy, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or 16 with written parental consent. Donors must bring a valid photo ID. Platelet donations can only be done after at least one whole blood donation.

Click the button above to find a donation center near you.

Greenwood, home of loyal donors

Greenwood, home of loyal donors

Greenwood donors celebrate milestones 

A few Greenwood donors have gone above and beyond in their blood donation journeys to save hundreds of local lives! These donors are great examples of loyal, local lifesavers. From everyone at TBC, thank you for your continuous blood donations!

Let’s start with Jeanette Templeton (pictured below) who has donated 38 gallons. Her journey began on a personal note, when her best friend’s husband needed blood transfusions years ago. After she started donating, she realized it’s simply the right thing to do for her community. She loves donating at the Greenwood Center because she has made friends with the staff over the years. Templeton was born and raised in Abbeville, SC and went to high school and college there as well. She has two children and five grandchildren and likes to stay active and involved with her family. 

Craig Ticknor (pictured below) has been donating since the 60s. Like Jeanette, he says he knew back then that it was the right thing to do. When we asked him why he donates with TBC, he said: “Blood is a critical part of our lives it’s what keeps people alive.”
 
TBC would also like to thank Wildred Vaudreuil and Vickie Seagle, who have both donated 42 gallons so far. We couldn’t do our life-saving work without you!

Veteran’s donation mission inspires TBC

Veteran’s donation mission inspires TBC

TBC Helps Veteran Donate Blood in Every State 

Steve Harrell is a true example of what commitment looks like. As a U.S. Army Veteran, he knows a thing or two about dedication and service. And now he’s on a mission to donate blood in every state. On the surface you may think, ok…that’s doable. That’s just donating 50 times right? But the whole thing will take about 7 years! Not your typical road trip… But nonetheless, Harrell hopped into his trusty RV and took off on a journey riding all over the nation, saving local lives along the way.

“You might be walking down the street one day and that person right there…you may have saved his or her life,” said Harrell.

Harrell clearly has a servant’s heart. Now retired, he says he’s driven by his passion to give back to the communities that make up the great nation he served in the Army. And on one of the most patriotic days of the year, Veteran’s Day, Harrell landed in Arden, NC to donate blood at the TBC donation center there. His goal to only give to community blood centers is what led him to TBC.

“If you want to be a hero…you can do that right here at home,” Harrell told TBC. “People that give blood are heroes too, they’re saving lives every time they donate.”

With the help of TBC, Harrell checked the 10th state off his list: North Carolina. He donated again in January with TBC in South Carolina to check the box for state #11, as one of the first donors to give at the new North Charleston Donation Center. The Jacksonville, Florida native spends his time between donations getting to know veterans in the community, since he can only give blood every 56 days. 

TBC is honored to be a part of Harrell’s mission. Because of that inspiration, TBC vowed to give $10 for each center donor who gave on Veterans Day to the Wounded Warrior Program, an organization that works with local companies to hire veterans. Thanks to donors who gave on 11/11 like Harrell, TBC plans to donate $3,380 to the organization! 

To those who have served, thank you. To our blood donors, thank you. To Steve Harrell, thank you for including TBC in your mission. Our communities are better because of all of you!

Each blood donation has the power to save up to three lives. Together as a community, help show these local heroes and their families that we support them too.

When donors give local with The Blood Connection, it stays local. TBC is the primary blood provider for local hospitals, which means when anyone there needs blood, TBC supplies it. While trauma is the most obvious reason for blood usage, cancer patients are usually the number one recipients of blood products. Donations are also needed for burn victims, premature infants, surgeries, and those with blood disorders, to name a few. When community members share blood, healing happens, and families remain whole. 

Blood donors must be healthy, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or 16 with written parental consent. Our centers are open Monday-Friday 7am-7pm and Saturday-Sunday 7am-5pm. Click here to make an appointment or to call a specific center.

Give Thanks, Give Blood

Give Thanks, Give Blood

Blood donors, someone is thankful for you

Blood donors share life. And for that, thousands of people in our community are thankful that blood donors give so generously. During a month that’s already filled with reminders of gratitude, The Blood Connection wants to thank our loyal platelet donors with a t-shirt they can wear loud and proud.  

For the entire month of November, platelet donors will receive a special “thankful” t-shirt in addition to the regular gift card.

We hope the shirt reminds platelet donors to be thankful for their ability to donate, while also letting the community know that a blood recipient is thankful for them. In a world filled with so much chaos, stopping to be thankful can do a lot of good. To our donors, thank you. Thank you. Thank you!

So let’s talk about platelets. What are they? Platelets are small fragments in our blood that help stop bleeding. Platelets may be tiny, but they’re POWERFUL. They’re little life-savers for the many brave people who are battling cancer. Chances are, someone you know came to mind. Cancer treatments can reduce patients’ platelet counts, which isn’t a good thing. That’s where our loyal donors come in! Thanks to platelet donations, patients are able to get back the platelets their bodies need to get better. While platelets are primarily used to help cancer patients, others benefit from them too, like people with rare blood diseases or transplant patients.

QUICK FACTS
-Small cell fragments in the blood that help stop or prevent bleeding
-Made in our bone marrow
-Shelf life is only 5 days
-Used most commonly for surgeries, transplants, and cancer treatments

If you’ve donated whole blood before, donating platelets is similar but it takes a little longer. The process can only be done in a center. Through one needle stick and a fancy machine, your blood is drawn and the platelets are filtered out. The rest of your blood components are then given back to you through the same needle. It takes about an hour and a half. Feel free to enjoy your favorite TV shows and snacks on us! Donations can only be made at a TBC Center. Please call your local center or 864-751-1168 with any questions or to make an appointment. Appointments are recommended.

MORE INFO: Click here for a little more explanation about what donation type is best for your blood type.

Centers are open M-F 7a-7p and on the weekends 7-5pm. Blood donors must be healthy, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or 16 with written parental consent. Donors must bring a valid photo ID. Platelet donations can only be done after at least one whole blood donation.

Click the button below to find a donation center near you.

A Precious Story

A Precious Story

A Precious Story

            As a parent of a child who used blood products to survive, it has been an honor for me to be employed at The Blood Connection.  I started this journey in 2000 as a recruitment volunteer sharing my daughter’s story throughout the community and surrounding collection areas to help increase minority blood donations and sickle cell awareness.  My daughter, Precious Gamble, received monthly blood transfusions in order to keep her hemoglobin as close to twelve as possible to prevent her from having additional strokes due to sickle cell disease.  During this time, it was extremely hard to find minority blood donors with the same genetic makeup as Precious. In most cases, it doesn’t matter who the blood donor was as long as the blood was on the shelf when needed. However, in rare cases like someone receiving monthly blood transfusions, it’s important for the recipient to receive blood from someone of the same ethnicity due to each race having different types of antigens pertinent to them.  Sharing my daughter’s story taught me that there are people in this world willing to help you even if they don’t know you.  Precious’ story helped increase minority blood donations by 1000 units in 2001.

            After my daughter died in February 2004, I made it my mission to continue promoting the importance of minority blood donations and sickle cell awareness.  I was hired at The Blood Connection as a “Special Recruiter” in September, 2004. In this position, I was constantly out in the community recruiting blood donors, setting up booths at health fairs, doing speaking engagements at local schools, colleges, different community organizations and churches sharing my daughter’s story and educating the community on the different myths about donating blood.  While being out in the community was rewarding within itself, I decided to switch departments after three and a half years and learn all that I could about what happens to the blood after it’s donated.

            In the manufacturing systems department, the whole blood unit is turned into different life saving components.  This is a very busy department. On a daily basis the whole blood units collected are separated into an rbc, plasma and sometimes a cryoprecipitate. The rbc is then leukoreduced by filtration and when all testing is complete, the components, are ready for distribution out to the hospitals.  To be a part of the processing side is completely different from the recruiting side because it’s more hands on and public free unless there is a tour coming through. This is an interesting process to see during a tour. Although, being in this department, didn’t allow me to promote minority blood donations on a daily basis, it did help me to play a major role in making sure that the components were prepared in a safe manner for future recipients.  Having good team oriented employees in this department helps to ensure that component processing never comes to a halt.  Although, processing the blood was interesting and sometimes fun, in 2018, I decided to switch departments again to learn how it all ties together.

            Every unit of blood collected has to be approved by the Quality Systems (QS) department. This department is basically behind the scene making sure that all The Blood Connection standards are upheld to the highest quality within each department. By doing the behind the scene inspections and reviews QS is able to help carry out the mission of all TBC employees to make sure that our hospitals have an adequate, safe and cost effective blood supply.

My name is Priscilla Ketter and I am a proud employee carrying out the mission of The Blood Connection while helping to save one more for Precious.

 

Be(er) Local, Save Lives

Be(er) Local, Save Lives

Oktoberfest…For Beer Lovers and Lifesavers!

Leaves…pumpkins…sweater weather…and beer! That’s the sweet sound of October! And there’s no better way to ring in the Fall season than by saving lives with TBC! Good news — we’re teaming up with community-centered breweries the entire month so you can get rewarded for being a lifesaver. 

It’s Oktoberfest the TBC way! Just like our brewery partners, we take pride in being local. As your community blood center, blood donations stay local, so when you donate with TBC, you save lives in the community. To celebrate Oktoberfest and our communities, TBC will be having mobile blood drives at various local breweries. Stop by to donate blood and you’ll walk away with a brewery gift card and snazzy koozie to hold that cold one.

(Please do not drink alcohol before or after donating blood)

Brewery blood drives vary by region: 

Raleigh/ENC:

2-Oct 4p-8p LoneRider-Wake Forest 1839 S. Main St Ste 600, Wake Forest
5-Oct 12p-5p Fullsteam 726 Rigsbee Ave, Durham
6-Oct 12p-4p Clouds 1233 Front St, Raleigh
18-Oct 4p-8p Morgan St. Food Hall 411 W. Morgan St., Raleigh
19-Oct 12:30p-5:30p Big Boss Brewing 1249 Wicker Dr, Greenville
20-Oct 1p-6p Deep River Brewing 700 W. Main St., Ste 102
25-Oct 4p-8p Morgan St. Food Hall 411 W. Morgan St., Raleigh
26-Oct 12p-6p Pitt St. Brewing 630 S Pitt St., Greenville
26-Oct 1p-6p Oak City Brewing  616 N. First Ave, Knightdale
12-Oct 12-2:30pm Hi-Wire Brewing 800 Taylor St. Durham
19-Oct 2p-6p Lonerider-Raleigh 8816 Gulf Ct., Raleigh 
29-Oct 4p-8p The Glass Jug 5410 NC-55 Suite V, Durham 
31-Oct 4p-8p Trophy Brewing and Tap 656 Maywood Ave, Raleigh 

Upstate SC: 

8-Oct 3:30-8:30pm Keowee Brewing 401 E Main St, Seneca
26-Oct 12-5pm 13 Stripes Brewery 250 Mill Street, Taylors
20-Oct 3:30-6pm Carolina Bauernhaus- Anderson 115 Federal St, Anderson
25-Oct 3-8pm  Iron Hill Brewery 741 Haywood Rd, Greenville

Charleston:

5-Oct 1p-6p Palmetto Brewing Co. 289 Huger St, Charleston
9-Oct 5p-9p Frothy Beard Brewing Co. 1401 Sam Rittenberg Blvd, Charleston
12-Oct 11:30-3:30 Low Tide Brewing 2863 Maybank Hwy, Johns Island
13-Oct 11a-3p Holy City Brewing 4155 Dorchester Rd, Charleston
24-Oct 4-8pm Ghost Monkey Brewery 522 Wando Ln, Mt Pleasant
27-Oct 1-5pm Tradesman Brewery 1647 King St Ext N, Charleston
27-Oct 12-4pm Two Blokes Brewery 547 Long Point Rd, Mt Pleasant

Asheville:

6-Oct 4-9pm Asheville Pizza and Brewing 675 Merrimon Ave., Asheville
16-Oct 2-7pm Oskar Blues Brewery 342 Mountain Industrial Dr, Brevard

*Click on each brewery name to make an appointment. 

Local blood donations are especially important as winter approaches. Donations usually take a dip in the colder months. But the demand for blood never stops. That’s why our blood donors are essential to saving lives. Be the difference for someone in your community!

Blood donors must be healthy, weigh at least 110 pounds, and be 17 years old or 16 with written parental consent. Donors must bring a valid photo ID.