The American Red Cross is looking for blood drive hosts to help prevent blood shortages and ensure it has enough blood during the coming winter months.
Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood, according to the Red Cross. The organization says it needs about 6,500 additional groups across the country to host blood drives in December, January and February.
More than 80 percent of blood donations are made at blood drives hosted by volunteers, and hosting and organizing a drive is easier than people think.
"Hosting a blood drive with Red Cross is pretty simple," said Joe Turner, who a blood drive coordinator. "The donor recruitment manager takes care of the drive logistics, and I help by asking my friends and family to schedule an appointment to give blood at the drive."
Those who choose to host blood drives are not left to do it on their own. A Red Cross representative works with the hosts and helps them plan everything. Equipment and staff are also provided.
Blood drive partners who host a drive between Dec. 20 and Jan. 6 will provided with long-sleeve Red Cross T-shirts to give to everyone who donates.
"When someone hosts a blood drive, they give donors a chance to donate lifesaving blood, in turn helping to save dozens or even hundreds of lives," said Cliff Numark, senior vice president, Biomedical Services for the Red Cross.
To learn more about hosting a blood drive and to sign up, visit the American Red Cross website.