Archive for the ‘Donors’ Category

First Commit for Life Getaway Winner Announced!

Monday, October 10th, 2011

Congratulations to our first Commit for Life Getaway winner! James Dolan of Bellaire was randomly selected from all Commit for Life members who donated or attempted to donate in the month of September, and received a $500 gift card for travel on Southwest Airlines.

Dolan, a donor at The Blood Center’s Bill T. Teague Neighborhood Donor Center, was entered in the drawing when he donated whole blood on Sept. 14. He has been donating with Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center since 1999, and as a gold-level Commit for Life member, he received an extra entry in the Commit for Life Getaway promotion. He says the gift card will be helpful as he takes his daughter, a senior in high school, to visit college campuses this year.

The Commit for Life Getaway promotion continues throughout the month of October. If you are eligible and haven’t donated yet this month, visit a mobile blood drive or Neighborhood Donor Center soon for your chance to win.

Belts and Blood: Local MMA Community Gathers to Help Save Lives

Thursday, September 8th, 2011

Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center partners with lots of different kinds of organizations to host blood drives that attract a wide variety of donors – students, business professionals, healthcare workers, military veterans… the list goes on and on. And after last Saturday, you can add MMA fighters to that list.

At a blood drive hosted by, the online hub for MMA (mixed martial arts) activities in the Houston area, The Blood Center counted 13 MMA fighters and an even greater number of fans and supporters among its donors. The drive brought in a total of 44 products to help save lives in local hospitals!

Barry Laminack, co-owner of the website, said he was particularly proud of the event not only because of the difference it will make for local patients, but also because of the positive light it shed on the Houston MMA community. His detailed write-up on the event is posted on the site.

Take a look to learn more about the drive and the many individuals and organizations that helped make it happen, and view photos from the event. Thanks to Paradigm Training Center, where the drive was held, and to everyone involved with for a fantastic blood drive!

Joe Trevino, Guilherme Moreira and Colin Thomas Wright were among the local MMA fighters who came out to support the blood drive Saturday.

Beat the Heat! Important Safety Tips for Blood Donors

Tuesday, August 2nd, 2011

We wouldn’t be exaggerating to say that summer blood donors are developing a new appreciation for the air-conditioned comfort of our Neighborhood Donor Centers and donor coaches. With temperatures topping 100 degrees this week, the heat can be hazardous if protective measures aren’t taken – and Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center is encouraging donors to stay safe by following these tips.

Take a seat and enjoy some juice and cookies before heading back out into the heat.

Stay awhile. We always encourage donors to relax for a few minutes after their donation before leaving the donor center or drive, but this is especially important when it’s hot outside. Have some refreshments, take a seat and feel free to linger for as long as it takes you to feel good as new.

Quench your thirst. Every blood drive and Neighborhood Donor Center has a well-stocked supply of water and juice for donors to enjoy after they’ve given. Be sure to grab a drink before heading out, even if you don’t feel thirsty. It is important to stay well-hydrated by drinking plenty of non-caffeinated, non-alcoholic fluids. You might even take a bottle of water for the road and be sure to drink it within 30 to 45 minutes.

Cool off. After you leave the donor center or blood drive, your vehicle will probably feel like a sauna. Before you drive away, roll down the windows or let the air conditioning run for a moment to help prevent lightheadedness as you’re driving.

Take it easy. We typically ask donors not to engage in strenuous activities following their donation, and we hope you will take this advice to heart when the heat poses an additional danger. If you have to spend time outdoors after donating, it’s a good idea to take it easy. And while we always tell donors to avoid alcohol consumption for 24 hours after donating blood, we think it’s worth an additional reminder at times like this.

Enjoy some ice cream! In case you hadn’t heard, August is Blue Bell Month at Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center. If you donate or attempt to donate any time this month, you’ll receive a gift certificate for a free pint of Blue Bell ice cream. Gift certificates can be redeemed wherever you buy groceries – so beat the heat by grabbing a pint of your favorite flavor.

Rebecca’s Story

Monday, July 18th, 2011

We recently received the following note from donor and ExxonMobil employee Rebecca Clarke. Thanks to Commit for Life donors like you, Rebecca’s story has a happy ending!

Phil and Rebecca Clarke.

When possible, I regularly give blood, either through the ExxonMobil blood drives or through my local Neighborhood Donor Center. Most recently I was reminded of how important my regular donations are, when my husband had to have a transfusion of four units of blood due to complications from Crohn’s Disease. Ironically, even though our blood types match, he needed the blood urgently and could not receive an immediate transfusion from me since I had donated recently. Instead, he received blood from a donor who gave through The Blood Center. I jokingly questioned whether he might actually be receiving my blood! How lucky we are that this blood was so readily available in our time of need. Thank you for all you do!

The need for blood is constant, and someday it might be your loved one who is in need. Find a Location near you to give blood today and help save a life like Phil’s!

An Inspirational Email

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Each week, The Blood Center’s customer service representatives respond to hundreds of questions from donors via email and telephone – questions regarding how and where to donate, how to use Digital Donor, ordering Commit for Life store items and much more. But every so often, they receive a communication that does not call for a response, but rather offers a comment or suggestion.

Last week, we received one such email from a donor named Lisa. She wrote:

I don’t have any questions. I just wanted to tell you what a privilege it is to donate blood. I received a voice mail with the voice of a little girl who has been helped by blood donations, I see the commercials on TV, and I get emails with photos of recipients. I look at every face, consider the precious life of that person, and I thank God for the opportunity to help in my small way.

Thank you for the service you provide, for the lives you save, and for the difference you make in the world and in its future.

Wow! What a tremendous compliment, and what wonderful affirmation of the work that we all – donors, volunteers, blood drive groups and Blood Center employees – do to help save lives! The customer service representative who received the email shared it with her supervisor, and it’s being shared throughout The Blood Center to remind employees how important their work is.

Thank you, Lisa, for letting us know why you Commit for Life!

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