CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – The American Red Cross celebrated the holiday season with its Gift of Life Blood Drive in Harrison County on Wednesday.

The Robinson Grand Performing Arts Center teamed up with WBOY to host the event for the American Red Cross. Others contributing to the event include the United Way of Doddridge and Harrison Counties.

Organizers said that the pandemic along with the holiday season has caused a nationwide blood shortage which has been in effect for several months.

A donor giving blood at the Robinson Grand (WBOY image)

“It’s probably one of the most important gifts that someone can give during this season because every unit of blood could potentially help three individuals,” said Jason Keeling, Executive Director of the Allegheny Highlands Chapter of the American Red Cross. “That might be through plasma or platelets or red blood cells that are collected. It might help someone who has just experienced a traumatic accident, a burn, it might be a cancer patient. So there are a variety of ways a donation can help.”

Keeling said the Red Cross provides nearly 40% of blood needed at the national level.

WBOY 12 New’s Creative Services Director Mikela Losquadro donated blood at the event and said it’s really important for people to take the time and give the gift of blood this holiday season. 

“WBOY was absolutely excited to be a part of such an important cause that really helps give back to the community especially in times that are as dire as the ones that we are facing right now,” said Losquardro. “As far as blood donation goes, we are kind of at an unprecedented level of needing donations from people, and because of the pandemic, that hasn’t always been feasible, so we’re really excited  to help get the message out about events like this taking place in Clarksburg.”

The United Way of Doddridge and Harrison Counties and other local news outlets also helped spread the word about the event.

If you want to give blood, you can find a donation location using this link.