As I reclined in one of the Bloodworks Northwest’s chairs last July to donate blood at the Terry Avenue headquarters I had an idea. Why not have a blood drive at the Belltown Community Center in my neighborhood?
I knew the Multi-Purpose Room of the Community Center to be a beautiful, open space with hardwood floors. I hoped maybe my neighbors and near-by workers would want to come and donate blood.
I called Heidi Schaiberger, Donor Resources Representative for Bloodworks Northwest to help assess the idea. We worked together with Melissa Valenzuela, Manager of the Belltown Community Center to develop a plan for the Center’s first blood drive. I solicited commitment signatures. Heidi made a site inspection and concluded we should Go For It! Then we organized and distributed some publicity.
I received training from Bloodworks Northwest’s Volunteer Coordinator, Molly Jordan, to staff the Canteen–the party place where donors sit and snack on salty treats or sweet cookies or raisins and have a choice of re-hydrating juices or water after donating a pint of blood.
At noon on Wednesday, September 30, 2015, the first group of donors walked in to register to give blood. I almost cried when I saw them. Medical science, compassion and good architecture are passions of mine and to share these with my neighbors through a blood drive at the Center was very moving for me.
Thanks to everyone who donated blood and all who helped make the drive a success including the Blood Collection Staff and the Belltown Community Center staff. I hope to see more of my neighbors and local workers at the 2nd Belltown Community Center Blood Drive, January 12th, 2016, from 12:30 to 6:30 pm.
Editor Note: 22 pints of blood were collected during this event.