Canadian Blood Services recently partnered with Red Deer RCMP, Red Deer Emergency Services and Red Deer County Firefighters for a blood drive before the long weekend.
The partnership acted as an awareness campaign surrounding safety for the long weekend.
“For Canadian Blood Services, typically for long weekends and with summer approaching, we find that a lot of people get busy, they go out of town, and so we’ll need more donors to come in,” said Shaun Richer, territory manager and donor relations for Canadian Blood Services.
Of the many representatives was Supt. Ken Foster, officer in charge of the Red Deer RCMP.
“Certainly giving blood is always of importance. As we know statistically the first long weekend of the year can be a very dangerous weekend on certainly Alberta’s highways and elsewhere with people recreating and engaging in some higher risk activities,” he said.
He said giving blood is also of critical importance when it comes to saving lives.
“It’s the gift of life, to use the slogan that’s commonly used, and if others do so there’s a sufficient supply. We live in Central Alberta and of course Central Alberta is prone to tornadoes and any other number of major incidents that could happen, and you never know when one of those incidents could happen where you have a mass casualty or a large number of people in need of blood services.”
District Fire Chief with Red Deer County, Tom Metzger was also present, but this time, to give support to his fellow employees.
“I’ve donated blood all my life up until two years ago when I actually had a medical issue where what helped save my life was the blood I received back,” said Metzger.
He said his whole family has always been wanting to donate blood to help out, right from his mom and dad, down to all of his brothers and sisters.
“It’s just something important to make sure that people know that we’re out there. People know that blood is needed. I think it’s very important because it really helps saves lives all the way down the line,” he said.
For August, Richer said they will pick things up a little with the same members coming back down for an internal challenge.
“They’re going to have a fun little fight to see which organization can raise the most blood donations,” he said.
Richer said there’s always a need for blood donors and they encourage donors to come out, roll up their sleeves and book an appointment.
“What a lot of people don’t understand is that that need is always constant we’re just always here to help out.”