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Blood drive helps two organizations at once

The American Red Cross and Penn State Wilkes-Barre's THON fundraising both benefit from Monday's blood drive.

LEHMAN, Pa. — Inside Hayfield Hall on the Penn State Wilkes-Barre campus in Lehman Township, donors signed up to give blood on Monday.

"It's not as scary as it sounds. I definitely recommend doing it if you can. It's a great cause. So, if you have the chance, go for it," said Andrew Zimmerman of Harveys Lake, a student at Penn State Wilkes-Barre.

It turns out that squeezing the stress balls for donations here not only helps the American Red Cross. 

"They're going to be donating $4 for every screened donor that comes today. So, every student who comes in and goes, $4 that goes towards our THON committee to raise money for the Four Diamonds Fund for Childhood Cancer," explained campus activities coordinator John Vito Powell.

That makes this drive a two-for-one special.

"To know that Red Cross is in such a critical need for blood and that we're able to provide a blood drive in an area where maybe blood drives aren't so common is a really great opportunity. I'm glad that people from the community are coming in that aren't just from our campus. They're also from the surrounding areas, and it's able to bring them to our campus as well, and it's also all for the Four Diamonds Fund for Childhood Cancer. So, two birds, one stone," added Powell.

"This year has actually been extremely awesome when it comes to our efforts for fun because, after last year, it was a bit of a slow start because we went from having a pandemic where a THON was even taking place in person or anything like that," said Hailey Carey, the campus's primary chair for the THON Committee. "Now that it's coming back, we've been growing back a little bit stronger this year. We actually increased our goal by about two times the amount last year with an overall goal of $10,000."

The deadline to donate to Penn State Wilkes-Barre's THON efforts is February 19. 

If you want to find an American Red Cross Blood Drive near you, click here.

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