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Red Cross Celebrates New Vehicle Donated By CAP COM FCU



Officials from the American Red Cross were happy to show off a new vehicle that they were able to add to its local Blood Services fleet, thanks to a donation from CAP COM Federal Credit Union.

A co-branded van was recently unveiled before an audience of Red Cross volunteers and board members at the New York-Penn Blood Services Region Albany District Office. Officials said that the new vehicle will help to transport lifesaving blood and blood products to hospitals across the region.

“We are extremely grateful to CAP COM for this generous gift,” said Kevin Coffey, chief development officer for the American Red Cross Eastern New York Region. “We rely on vehicles like this one – and on a dedicated corps of volunteer drivers – to deliver blood to hospitals throughout our community. With this brand new van, which replaces another vehicle with more than 360,000 miles on it, CAP COM is helping to ensure that our volunteers can deliver donated blood safely and reliably across our region.”

“CAP COM is overjoyed to partner with the Red Cross and help fund and unveil the new fuel-efficient blood transportation van,” said Paula Stopera, president and CEO of CAP COM Federal Credit Union. “Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood and the Red Cross must collect nearly 13,000 blood and platelet donations every day and safely transport these units to meet the needs of local patients and hospitals. This van is a 24/7 lifesaving gift.”

Volunteer Transportation Specialist Ed Breen shared his thanks on behalf of more than 50 volunteer drivers who will benefit from the gift of the van. “I’ve been a volunteer driver with the Red Cross for five years and driven many routes, through all kinds of weather, to deliver blood to different hospitals,” Breen said. “It’s great to have a brand new vehicle that we can count on, because so many patients in need of blood are counting on us.”

At the vehicle unveiling, the Red Cross also reiterated an urgent call for eligible individuals of all blood types to donate now. With fewer blood donors and fewer blood drives during the Fourth of July holiday week, blood donations are currently being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in. More donations are needed now – especially type O – to replenish the blood supply.

“If you are able to donate, we urge you to make an appointment to give now,” said Sonja Ronovech, district manager for the NY-Penn Blood Services Region. “First-time and regular blood donors, as well as those who haven’t donated in a while, are all needed so that vans like this one stay on the road delivering a readily available supply of blood for patients in need.”

HOW TO DONATE BLOOD

Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit RedCrossBlood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.

Blood and platelet donors can save time at their next donation by using RapidPass® to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, before arriving at the blood drive. To get started, follow the instructions at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass or use the Blood Donor App.

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