KAY Club collects 22 units of blood for American Red Cross

Trying+to+keep+calm+while+giving+blood%2C+Natalie+Demoure%2C+11%2C+cringes.+Demoure+decided+to+give+blood+as+a+way+to+give+back+to+the+community.+Photo+by+E.+Steenbock

Trying to keep calm while giving blood, Natalie Demoure, 11, cringes. Demoure decided to give blood as a way to give back to the community. Photo by E. Steenbock

Trying to keep calm while giving blood, Natalie Demoure, 11, cringes. Demoure decided to give blood as a way to give back to the community. Photo by E. Steenbock

by Austyn Esser

Oct.3 was the first of the annual blood drives at South, and 37 students and staff decided to donate their blood. The event, sponsored by the Kansas Association of Youth chapter at South, was able to collect 22 units of blood for the American Red Cross.

“It’s been a pretty good day, we have had a lot of new first time donors,” Patsy Howland, phlebotomist of the American Red Cross, said.

KAYs members not only had to put together water bottles and snickers bars for those donating, but also had the responsibility of getting people to sign up.

“We basically just had to fill up all of the spots or they [Red Cross] wouldn’t come out,” Kambry Porter, 12, said.

First time donor, Natalee Demoure, 11, put her personal fears aside and focused on the greater cause.

“I was really nervous and kind of freaked out because I don’t like looking at needle, but it was worth it because I got to help someone else,” Demoure said.

Her reasoning behind donating was essentially bigger than the needle.

“I wanted to help someone else that needed blood because it could be vital that they get it,” Demoure said.

Everett Lacy, 11, seized the opportunity to donate a couple of times because he has a rare blood type of O positive.

“I guess because of my blood type I should help people. I don’t want to be selfish about it,” Lacy said.

Cody Bartlett, 11, shares similar feelings about donating as he has done so twice despite his nerves.

“Even though it was my second time I still felt nervous, but I felt fine until about an hour later. I got extremely tired and I kind of lost focus of what I was doing in English class,” Bartlett said. “But I would do it again.”

Although students do not know who their blood will help, the fact that they know it could potentially help someone who really needs it is enough for them.

“I’m still really dizzy, but I am glad I got to help someone. I can’t wait to donate again,” Demoure said.

This blood drive was the smaller of the two that KAY Club sponsors each year. The large one, which will be held in the gym, will be held in May of 2012.

Everett Lacy, 11, uses his iPod touch as a distraction while giving blood. The KAY Club collected 22 units of blood for the Red Cross. Photo by E. Steenbock