After a record-breaking turnout at the Suncoast Science Center/Faulhaber Fab Lab (SSC) blood drive in July 2020, the SunCoast Blood Centers (SCBC) blood mobiles are making a return on November 5. While the summer drive drew an astonishing crowd of over 70 donors and produced enough blood to save a potential 170 lives, blood and platelet shortages during COVID-19 continue to grow.
Blood Drive Needs Grew in 2020
“Here on the Suncoast our high schools would have hosted 28 blood drives by November 1 collecting over 700 units, but this year looks very different with very few schools offering on campus blood drives,” shared Joan Leonard of SCBC. “We are encouraging all age groups to come out to help increase the blood supply during these trying times. Blood has a short shelf life and cannot be manufactured when the supply runs out—we count on the generosity of donors giving up a moment of their week to help others whose life depends on receiving blood.”
SSC has remained steadfast in the fight against the spread of COVID-19 through its Face Mask & Shield Project which provided over 4,000 masks and shields to healthcare workers in need earlier this year and its more recent Student Community Innovation Program which provided student volunteers with an opportunity to give back through the creation of Coviducation. A web-app designed to educate Sarasota County Schools elementary school students on virus safety as schools reopened. Mementos made by SSC student volunteers for the first blood drive wowed SCBC staff and the SSC/SBSC partnership has continued to grow as additional student volunteers work to design and fabricate a special keychain for high-level blood donors.
The blood drive will be held from 9am-4pm on Thursday, November 5 at 4452 South Beneva Road, Sarasota, FL 34233. All successful blood donations will be tested for COVID-19 antibodies at no charge. Donors will also receive a $10 Amazon gift card and be entered into a raffle to win free passes to an upcoming STEM Saturdays class or holiday workshop held at SSC.
To reserve your appointment to donate blood on November 5, visit the website or call 1-866-97-BLOOD.
About the Suncoast Science Center/Faulhaber Fab Lab
The Suncoast Science Center/Faulhaber Fab Lab is a 501©(3) not-for-profit organization founded with the mission to inspire and support tomorrow’s innovators through experiential learning in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math. Through its fabrication lab and innovative programs, the Suncoast Science Center encourages people of all ages to explore ideas, build skills and confidence, and become lifelong learners. To learn more, visit Suncoast Science or connect with us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
About SunCoast Blood Centers
A registered 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, SunCoast Blood Centers has provided a reliable supply of safe blood products and services for our community since 1949. SunCoast is the exclusive supplier of blood products and services for Sarasota Memorial Healthcare System, Doctors Hospital of Sarasota, Manatee Memorial Hospital, Lakewood Ranch Medical Center, Complex Care Hospital of Ridgelake, Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Sarasota, North Port Emergency Room, Fawcett Memorial Hospital of Port Charlotte, Englewood Community Hospital and DeSoto Memorial Hospital. SunCoast also partners with Moffitt Cancer Center to provide blood products including pathogen reduced platelets. Recognized for its outstanding service, the Sarasota Chamber of Commerce honored SunCoast as the 2017 Non-profit of the Year. SunCoast participates in cancer treatment programs, research and provides therapeutic services at the hospitals it serves. For donor locations and more information, visit Suncoast Blood website.
Photo credit from Suncoast Science Center: Student volunteers beam with joy after donating blood at the July 2020 blood drive.