All about donating blood


Priscila Chavez, Reporter

One person could save three lives just by donating blood. On Sept. 13, Belvidere North hosted their own annual blood drive in the school’s gym. The sign up sheet was out during lunch and students were able to pick which hour they would like to donate. Most kids decided it was best to do it during a study hall or gym since they wouldn’t  be able to participate because it is recommended that one refrain from forceful exercise and heavy lifting a couple days after their donation.

     Moving too much could cause one to become feeling faint or dizzy if that were to happen, they would need to sit down and take it easy until they were feeling adequate.

     “It was my first time giving blood, I thought it would hurt a lot more or make me feel weak but I was fine after. Before donating they gave me chips, juice and a stress ball to take home and it was cool to know that I was saving three lives just by donating that one time.” Titilayo Adeniyi (‘18).

      Before and after donating it’s really important that the person drinks loads of water because their body would need it to start producing blood. Since they lose it by donating, drinking water is even more urgent to replenish their system. It’s important to drink lots of fluids (except alcohol) and to eat well especially foods with high iron such as, spinach, whole grains, eggs and beans after so that person won’t feel weak. They should be able to donate a single unit of blood every 56 days.

     About 86 individuals at North were registered, but 23 were unable to donate, resulting in a total of 63 units collected. There were 57 new donors, but North had only about four percent of students sign up and actually donate, including teachers like Mrs. Karen Krider. The most common blood type was O-positive while AB-negative was the least common. Only one percent of the blood donated was AB- negative.

     After they’re done donating blood it goes to a process where their blood is scanned into a computer database and the test tubes are sent for testing.This is done to find out the blood type and test for infectious diseases. When test results are received they are later labeled and then stored until the blood is available to be shipped to hospitals.

      “My personal experience with the blood drive was that giving blood doesn’t hurt as bad as you would expect it to. Yes there was some numbness but nothing too crazy. Even though it was slightly uncomfortable I would say it was completely worth it. Also the staff were extremely nice and made sure you were comfortable at all times,” said Maritza Gonzalez (‘19)

     If donating blood sounds interesting, a person should look through their health records and see if they qualify as a candidate to donate. That person must have a normal temperature, blood pressure, and pulse. The person must be 16 years of age in order to donate with a guardian’s signature, and 17 in order to donate by themselves.

      Another way to donate outside of school is by going to Rock River Valley Blood Center here in Belvidere on S. State Street or by calling (815) 965-8751 to make an appointment. If it’s a first time donating they should bring a picture ID.