April 15, 2021

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Just Do Travel

Blood drive competition held between Virginia Beach’s Hotel and Restaurant Associations

3 min read

The Virginia Beach Hotel Association was able to get more blood donors in the competition.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The COVID-19 pandemic and the winter storms this year have greatly impacted blood drives across the country. The Virginia Beach Restaurant and Hotel Associations both wanted to give back. They set up a competition to see who can get the most donors.

The friendly blood drive competition between the two associations aimed to attract more people to donate.

“I’m with Team Hotel,” said American Red Cross Donor Rachel Cook. 

This is not Cook’s first donation and it will not be her last. It’s her way of giving back to the community.

“Because you save lives when you give blood and I think especially this year we’ve had so much loss that it’s probably more important than ever to donate blood,” said Cook. 

The associations started this competition to help the American Red Cross fill more bags of blood.

“Because it’s been really hard to recruit for blood over the pandemic, so this our way of giving back to the community,” said Virginia Beach Hotel Association Board Member Mary Elizabeth Collins. 

“The Red Cross has had a lot of cancellations due it the winter weather this year so they have a great need,” added Virginia Beach Restaurant Association Executive Director Stacey Shiflet. 

We asked The American Red Cross how this will help them fill their shelves. They sent us the following statement: 

As we commemorate the one-year milestone of the pandemic, we also mark a year of tremendous generosity where millions of volunteers have rolled up a sleeve to help patients in need. Blood donations remain essential to the health of our communities and the Red Cross is grateful for the ongoing support of blood donors and blood drive hosts during a year unlike any other in our history.

Every March, we celebrate Red Cross Month. Since 1943, every U.S. president has proclaimed March as Red Cross Month and it is a time where we honor those who make the lifesaving mission of the American Red Cross possible — the individuals across the country who turn compassion into action, helping others in times of crisis. Today, we are happy to work with the Virginia Beach Restaurant Association and the Virginia Beach Hotel Association for their support of two blood drives as we work diligently to make sure lifesaving blood products are available to those in need. Having a readily available blood supply at hospitals is a necessity. Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood and donations are essential to maintaining the health of our community. 

If someone is eligible and feeling well, we encourage them to please make an appointment today by visiting RedCrossBlood.org, using the Red Cross Blood Donor app or calling 1- 800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

The need for blood donations is consistent, as is the need for volunteers to help with our lifesaving mission. The American Red Cross has multiple volunteer opportunities for those interested in giving their time to assure our blood drives and blood products remain available. Those interested in volunteering with the American Red Cross can visit redcross.org/Volunteer or call 1-800-RED CROSS.

“This is just a great way our hospitality industry is such a giving community to get them out and give the gift of life,” said Shiftlet. 

Ultimately, the Virginia Beach Hotel Association won this blood drive competition.