Janet Harney/ tejano Tribune
Kayla Gignau donating at the blood drive.
El Paso Community College (EPCC) campuses have been hosting several blood drives with the help of the United Blood Services.
Opportunities for extra credit to participate in blood drives are offered by some EPCC instructors.
“I think it’s a great way to be involved in your community.
It doesn’t cost any money and I think that a lot of other instructors give other opportunities so I know this isn’t the only way they give extra credit but I do believe it’s a great incentive to come out and give blood,” said Monique Hilverding, a Donor Recruitment Representative for United Blood Services
Although teachers influence students to go out and donate blood the donation staff is more than happy to take it.
“Everybody is afraid of donating blood, but once they hear what the need is, the hope is that they will change their mind,” said Hilverding.
Hilverding understand the fear that comes with donating blood, but has words of encouragement for those interested.
“Overcome that fear of that needle. It’s not that bad. I mean, it’s not great –it is a needle, but to think about the person’s life who’s going to be affected. Not only their life, but their entire family,” said Hilverding.
The blood donation center needs at least 175 units of blood per day to keep the 18 hospitals well-stocked in El Paso, Texas and surrounding areas.
“In this area we generally have a 3-day supply. We have a 1 ½ day supply right now. If people knew and understood that, I think they would come out to give more,” said Hilverding.
Since the attack at that night club in Orlando, Florida, the countries’ blood donations have been sent to help the injured; which results in a lower blood supply locally.
“It saves up to three lives. So, I just thought that I might as well do what I can, you know? I’m making eight to 12 pints of blood. Giving one away is nothing to save a life,” said Kayla Gignau, a student at the Transmountain campus.