Blood Drive: Runners give their hearts’ content at blood drive


Marissa Machado, kinesiologymajor, finishes donating blood at the Houchin Blood Bank truck parked in front of the SRC on Oct 22. Photo by Stephanie Williams.

Angie Saavedra, Reporter

Houchin Community Blood Bank has been providing safe blood supply for hospitals in the Kern County area for years. They are dedicated to saving lives and were here on campus at the Student Union’s Runner Park on Oct. 22. Students donating blood are helping their community by replenishing the blood supply. According to Houchin’s website, “[T]hey will be improving the lives of women with pregnancy complications, patients with severe trauma, blood disorders, and many medical and surgical procedures.”  

  “By us students donating blood, we help save beautiful lives,” said senior Louis Barriers. Barriers donates blood whenever he gets the chance. “Donating blood makes me feel important. It makes me feel that I am doing my part in society by helping those who need it,” he said. 

 People who want to donate blood are encouraged to drink plenty of water and eat a full meal before donating by both Houchin Community Blood Bank and CSUB Athletics, sponsors of the blood drive, because water helps pump the donor’s veins, which gets their blood moving.   

  The process of donating blood starts out with registration. This is where donors use iPads to fill in their information. Photo identification is needed in order to qualify donors. Donors are then asked to fill out a questionnaire regarding their health, past medical issues, and medicines they are currently taking or have taken. Some questions regard any tattoos or piercings they may have, and how recently they were done. 

  Emily Villegas, a senior, said she was disappointed when she found out she couldn’t donate because of a tongue piercing she got a few months ago. Villegas explained in order to donate, any piercings must be more than a year old in order to prevent slow-incubating diseases, such as HIV, from accidentally getting into the blood supply. As it was Villegas’ first time trying to donate, she was discouraged because she was looking forward to contributing to saving a life.  

  After filling out the questionnaire, donors are then subject to screening with nurses to ensure they are healthy enough to donate blood that day. Nurses check the donors blood pressure and iron levels, and make sure that they meet the weight requirement of at least 110 pounds. If the donor passes the health screening they are allowed to donate.  

  Students and faculty who decided to participate in the on-campus blood drive were given a free Houchin Blood Bank t-shirt. If you missed the blood drive, you can stop by a Houchin Blood Bank and donate at either 5901 Truxtun Ave., or their new second location at 11515 Bolthouse Drive.