For many blood donors, giving a pint of blood is an act of service.
"My husband and I are retired, so we feel this is one way we can give back to the community,” Mari Eileen, a frequent blood donor, said.
She visits to Blood Source in Midtown every eight weeks – a process that takes about 45 minutes to an hour each time.
“It's really super easy and I mean, the needle isn't really anything. It's a stick for 4 seconds maybe,” Eileen said.
She's part of the blood bank's loyalty program — a point system that rewards frequent donors. The way it works: the more you donate, the more points you earn – which can be redeemed for different items.
"Such as amazon gift cards, movie tickets, Kings tickets, free food, barbecue grill sets, amazon kindles, and all other kinds of great items,” Alexander Sigua, public relations manager at Blood Source, said.
But it's not the perks that have people coming back.
"It's just kind of a nice side benefit,” Kris Adams, another repeat donor, said.
Over the last 8 years, Adams has been stopping in every two weeks to donate platelets — a two hour process.
"As a person, it makes you feel good that you're giving back and helping someone out who really needs it,” Adams said. “If I was ever in a bad situation in the hospital, I would hope there was people out there doing the same thing."
Adams is one of more than 92,000 Blood Source clients who are repeat donors. Last year, 74 percent of donations were made by frequent donors — and during this time of year they help keep the blood supply flowing.
"During the holiday season, it's critically important for those who can donate to come in because that level of blood supply does go down a bit lower than normal,” Sigua said.
If the rewards program motivates people to keep donating, then so be it. At the end of the day, it's that one pint of blood that can help save a person's life.
If want to sign up for the loyalty rewards program, you can do directly to BloodSource.com
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