It's the gift-giving season once again, and on Wednesday the Columbia County Emergency Services Division and Shepeard Community Blood Center are asking people to share the gift of life.
The county and Shepeard will hold a Pre-Holiday Community Blood Drive in Evans and Appling to help build up the blood center's supply in time for the holiday season. Collections will be taken from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. Wednesday at the Evans Government Center Auditorium on Ronald Reagan Drive, and from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Wednesday at the Roads and Bridges Department at the intersection of Columbia and County Camp roads.
Shepeard and the county normally team up for a blood drive in January, after holiday demands drain the blood center's supplies. But demand is highest around Christmas, when fewer people take the time to donate, said Pam Tucker, the county's emergency services director.
"Typically, the times when people give less are the times when you need more," she said.
Donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, be in good health and must not have donated blood within the past 56 days. Donors must be a minimum of 17 years old, though children as young as 16 can give blood with parental consent. A photo identification card is required.
All donors are given a free meal from Chick-fil-A and a T-shirt. Participants also can enter to win a GPS navigation system.
Tucker said the county and Shepeard are considering holding a community blood drive again in early March and a summer event in June.
For more information on the event, visit www.columbiacountyga.gov.
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