By Megan Rooney
On Wednesday, February 15 and Thursday, February 16, Canisius College’s Donate Life Club and UNYTS partnered to host a blood drive at Canisius College. One could either make an appointment or walk in to Pasliano the day of the drive to donate one pint of blood.
To many, the thought of donating blood and having a needle in your arm can be scary and nerve-wracking, but as soon as you walk into the donation area, every UNYTS employee does everything in their power to calm your nerves. From the check-in process, to removing the needle from your arm, the UNYTS workers are consistently ensuring that the donor is comfortable and doing okay.
Conor Shea, a senior at Canisius, was one of the donors. While reflecting on his past and when he started donating, he shared, “When I was in high school, I had a lot of bad experiences with bleeding and such from my wrestling career. I hated needles and was scared of my own blood for a while. I actually used donating blood as a way to help me conquer my fear while giving back to my community, and now I go back as often as I can!”
The first time Shea donated was in high school, as part of an AP government class, and he has continued to donate as often as he can since then. When asked if he would donate again, he says, “I would do it again in a heartbeat. Just the possibility of helping someone when they need it is what keeps me going back. As a Canisius student, we are taught to be ‘men and women for others,’ and I cannot think of being there for someone more than giving a part of you to someone who needs it.”
Many others, along with Shea, realized the benefits of blood donation. Not only does it allow one to give back to others, but it also saves up to three lives and, in trauma situations, is often the tool that helps victims survive their trauma.