Blood Drive participants, organizers reflect on event’s success

First-time donors help Red Cross and STUCO exceed their goal


Gavin Wood

Senior Josh Moellenhoff waits to get signed in so he can donate at the Student Council Blood Drive on Feb. 12. He was one of 40 first-time donors who participated.

Juli Mejia, Editor In Chief

On Feb. 12, Student Council (STUCO) hosted its annual blood drive at Lafayette from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.. The blood drive has been going on for over 16 years, helping many people in need along the way. 

As it was a Staff Professional Development day, students were allowed the day off while teachers had to attend meetings at the school. Because of the free day, STUCO sponsor David Choate said fewer students registered, but they are still very pleased with the overall results especially because of the great need for donations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Junior Anna Matusiak, who donated for the first time last Friday, enjoyed the experience and would do it again if she could. “Overall it was a great experience. All the volunteers and workers were so kind and really made you feel comfortable,” Matiusiak said. 

Matusiak decided to donate this year mainly because she reached the age requirements as well as a personal understanding of the importance of blood donations. 

“I have wanted to give blood because of my parent’s kidney transplant surgery, and if I can help other people with only my blood I am happy to donate,” Matusiak said. 

Matusiak plans on giving blood again in the future, and now feels better prepared for her next donation.  

In addition to Matusiak, there were 57 people out of the 62 attendees who met the qualifications and were able donate. Choate was hoping for about 50 donations, so they exceeded Choate’s expectations. 

In an email sent to Choate, Red Cross account representative Connor Zielonko said the number of donations during this time were phenomenal. “We blew our goal out of the water with 57 total units collected! To hit that number with everything going on, and with kids not in the building that day, is really incredible.  I can’t thank you and your students enough for all of your help and hard work,” Zielonko said.

In fact, out of the 57 that donated, 40 were first-time donors.

Senior Josh Moellenhoff was hesitant to donate blood at first because of his fear of needles, but his friend was able to convince him to donate this year. Though Moellenhoff spent the night before stressed for the experience, he was feeling fine once he got there and was assured by the nurses and his friends.

“The nurses were super helpful plus I had a decent amount of friends who were there that I could talk to and I just made sure not to look at the needle at all and I was good,”  Moellenhoff said.