Photo by Elizabeth O'Guin
By Vanessa Willis, Staff Writer —
Blood Assurance’s annual blood drive at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Bloodanooga, is returning to campus this month, giving students the opportunity to win prizes while potentially saving lives in the Chattanooga area.
The event will take this week, 10 a.m to 6 p.m. everyday from April 13 to 16 on Terrell Owens Way by the University Center. Due to COVID-19, the event will take place on Blood Assurance’s Blood Mobiles, where participants can safely social distance.
UTC has hosted Bloodanooga for several years, each time with a unique theme and set of prizes for participants. This year the theme is “The Future Is Bright,” and the prizes for participants include a t-shirt, a free meal from Subway and a chance to win a Macbook Air.
According to Caitlin Stanley, director of marketing and public relations at Blood Assurance, this theme was chosen as a representation of the hope many feel now that the severity of COVID-19 is fading.
“The pandemic is hopefully coming to an end, things are looking up and, if nothing else, at least the future is looking bright,” Stanley said.
In the past, Bloodanooga has attracted roughly 400 donors each year. Each donation saves three approximately lives, which means that thousands of people have been helped by the UTC community as a result of Bloodanooga’s presence on campus. According to Stanley, this event is extremely significant to Blood Assurance’s mission, and even creates repeat donors.
“We believe that the younger we can inform the community about how important it is to donate blood, the more often they become regular, routine blood donors,” she said. “If you start donating at age 20 you’ll understand how important and easy it is and continue to donate as you get older.”
UTC junior Heather Bishop has given at Bloodanooga in the past and is excited to see the event return to campus.
“I have donated at Bloodnooga in the past, it was so easy and the prizes were a great incentive,” Bishop said. “Overall, the process was really quick to do between classes and it felt good to do something to help the community without having to even leave campus.”
For those interested in learning more about next week’s event or the requirements for donating, visit www.bloodassurance.org.