By Lauren LaFrance
The 2021 UPEI Blood Rush, hosted by the UPEI Blood Donation Team will run from November 9th until December 17th. Students can donate blood at 85 Fitzroy St, Canadian Blood Services, Charlottetown. In the past, the Blood Rush was a competition between UPEI societies and clubs, where the team who donated the most would win a prize. This year however, this event simply provides individual students with the opportunity to win some prizes by volunteering to donate.
Donating blood can be scary, but it is also extremely rewarding, knowing that you are helping someone in need. Half the Canadian population will either need blood or will know someone who will need blood in their lifetime. However, only 4% of Canadians donate. This tremendous difference is what makes it so important to encourage everyone who can to give blood.
The Blood Rush provides an incentive to students to volunteer to give blood. May it be for the first time, or for the tenth time, every donation makes a difference. Prizes for the Blood Rush this year include brand new 2nd gen Apple AirPods, a $75 grocery gift card, and much more, including a $5 voucher for Hopyard Bar & Grill for each student who attempts to donate.
Although there will be no competition between UPEI groups, there will still be a bulletin board at the donation clinic where students can attach a pin for their societies. As well, at the clinic there will be a QR code to an online form where students can input their UPEI student email address and be entered into the prize draw.
The leader of the UPEI Blood Team, Riley MacKay, wants to encourage everyone who is able to donate blood. His advice to those who are hesitant to donate: “It’s all about empathy. If your parent, sibling, child, or friend was in urgent need of blood products, you wouldn’t hesitate to roll up your sleeve. It’s hardly a hypothetical, because someone’s mom, brother, daughter, or friend is in dire need of blood right now. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there.”
Any students wanting to get involved with the Blood Team on campus or who have questions about the Blood Rush or donating blood in general, can email UPEIBloodTeam@upeisu.ca or join the public Facebook group UPEI Blood Team 21-22. As well, Canadian Blood Services is always looking for volunteers. Anyone interested in getting involved at the clinic can email Krysta.Hanakowski@blood.ca.
Book your appointment to donate here.