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Social Media for Good: Blood, Sweat & Brinner!

Heather blood type = A for AwesomeI started blogging back in 2003 and, thinking back on it now, there weren't many people in my real life who knew or understood why in the heck I would even consider sharing personal stories, "on the internet".

Flash-forward 10 years:  nearly everyone I know is "on the internet" (including my own father, hey Apu!) doing pretty much the same thing -- connecting with each other and sharing information through social media channels like Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest -- not to mention, sharing stuff about their kids.

My kids have grown accustomed to hearing me go on...and on...and on...really, I could go on...fuh-evuh...about using their social media powers for good.

Aaaaaand, then my middle girl (she's 17) tells me her classmates are organizing an evening blood drive at a local community church over spring break and, well, how cool would it be if we help serve the folks donating blood breakfast for dinner (or brinner)?!?

Shopping for Brinner courtesy of #GreatStarts
Brinner supplies for our community project, good thing I'm used to shopping for lots of folks :)

So, we pitched our friends at Kellogg's:  they thought it was a very cool idea and supplied us with a gift card to help stock up on supplies, good thing, too.

Breakfast for dinner courtesy of #GreatStarts
Brinner is served, courtesy of #GreatStarts!

I also had the pleasure of speaking with Judy Daniels, the Business Development Manager of the New York Blood Center.  I was happy to hear we have kids going to the same school (hey Judy!!!) and FLOORED to learn:  it costs the blood center about $1,000,000 a year to supply donors with light snacks and drinks, which is very important, after donating a pint of blood.

Heather is all like donating blood on purpose feels good!
Sorry for the blurry pic, my hand was shaking, I hate needles. My kid donating blood, she's awesome :) 

NYBC annually provides close to one million blood components to 200 hospitals throughout New York City, New Jersey, the Hudson Valley, Long Island, and parts of Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

That's great, but it's a blood bank, they must have plenty of blood saved up, right?!?  Actually, far from it:

  • 40,000 pints are transfused each day in the United States. 
  • NYBC alone requires over 2,000 volunteer blood donations each day to meet the transfusion needs of patients in close to 200 New York and New Jersey hospitals. 
  • Each donation of blood can help save 3 lives following component (red cell, platelet, plasma) separation. 
  • Car accident and trauma victims may need as many as 50 or more red cell transfusions. 
  • Severe burn victims may need as many as 20 platelet transfusions. 
  • Bone marrow transplants may require platelets from over 100 donors and red cells from over 20 people.

Aaaaaand, my BIGGEST takeaway, blood products are perishable:

  • Donated red cells last only 42 days. 
  • Donated platelets last only 5 days. 
  • Plasma can be frozen for a year. 

There is no substitution for human blood.  The average person has between 8 to 12 pints of blood in their body and can easily spare one for donation.

Warned them I'm a dork, but they took my blood anyway!
See, it's easy ... if you don't look ;)

So, I put on my big girl platelets (snort!) and...BAM!!! sweat, took only a couple of minutes; apparently, I'm a good bleeder (their words, not mine, because...HURL!).   The thought of my possibly helping to save 3 lives...priceless.

Just donated a pint of's brinner time!

The blood drive collected over 30+ pints of blood and I feel it safe to say that my daughter would agree:  it was really great to be able to help give back, to those who are giving back, in some small way. 

Especially, since it was Heather's idea and everything.

Then we shared information about Kellogg's initiative to help provide 1 million breakfasts to kids in need via with student volunteers and then this is what happened:

Teens using their social media powers for good
More teens using their social media powers for good!

Kids today...right?!?...with their electronics and everything...IMHO...yeah, they are totally AWESOME!!!

© 2003 - 2013 This Full House

New and improved, with a fan page on Facebook, even :)

Disclosure:  I am honored to partner with Kellogg's in helping families (like mine) achieve #GreatStarts to their days.  Although I am being compensated for my services as a Kellogg's Ambassador for the length of the program, I pitched them the idea for this blog post, as a way to expand our reach and help give back to my community...IRL...and they were down with it.  All opinions are my own.

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