The YMCA of Montclair joined the many Ys across the country that are helping to address an urgent, ongoing need for blood donations. On Monday, April 13, more than 50 donors attended the first scheduled blood drive at the Park Street YMCA. A total of 21 pints of blood, which saves 63 lives, was collected in response to the growing blood shortage across the region. The Y thanks those who came out to donate, including YMCA of Montclair President and CEO Buddy Evans and Vice President of Operations Ann-Margaret Gutierrez.

“We are extremely grateful to those individuals who are supporting this life-saving cause,” said Evans. “Though our buildings are closed, our hearts are open. We are here to serve our community by addressing essential needs during this health crisis.”

Extra precautions are taken during these blood drives to ensure the safety of donors and volunteers. Protocols include temperature checks at entrance, adhering to social distancing guidelines throughout the donation process, and enhanced cleaning and disinfection of surfaces and medical supplies. The Red Cross also requires that donors schedule appointments to give blood. 

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The next Park Street YMCA blood drive is scheduled for May 1. According to redcrossblood.org, all donor appointment slots for this drive are filled.  The need for blood is constant. Please check redcrossblood.org for other local opportunities to give and future dates at the Park Street YMCA. All blood types are needed.

“The Red Cross encourages individuals to keep scheduled blood donation appointments when possible and to make new blood donation appointments for the weeks and months ahead to ensure a stable supply throughout this pandemic,” said Rosie Taravella, CEO, American Red Cross New Jersey Region. “Thank you to all blood donors and blood drive hosts who are helping and to all who will be.”