City Lifestyle

Want to start a publication?

Learn More

Featured Article

There's No Substitute

Take Time This Summer To Donate

Article by Linda Ditch

Photography by Provided by Community Blood Center

Originally published in Lawrence City Lifestyle

Summer is not only the perfect time for vacations, outdoor adventures, and sports gatherings. It’s also a great time to donate blood. In fact, it’s vital.

Blood donations drop in the summer as everyone becomes busy with warm-weather activities. Unfortunately, the need for blood, platelets and plasma does not. They often increase during this time due to accidents and elective surgeries people put off until vacation time.

“There’s no substitute for human blood,” says Community Blood Center Account Manager Kim Clark. “There is a constant need. Community Blood Center needs to collect over 600 pints a day to meet the needs of our local hospitals. And we supply blood to more than 68 area hospitals and 100 percent to Lawrence Memorial Hospital.”

Since its opening in 1958, more than one million patients have received blood donated at Community Blood Center donor centers and blood drives. More than 200,000 units of red blood cells, platelets and plasma are collected yearly. These units are used to treat thousands of local patients in need of life-saving care.

Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic further weakened the blood supply.  Kay Reeves, The Growth & Development Specialist with Community Blood Center, explains, “Over the course of COVID, we lost about 25,000 donors.  Our donor base was displaced as a result of donors working remotely. We also lost a large portion of our high school and college donors, which make up 25 to 30 percent of our donor base. It’s going to take us two to three years to get those donor numbers back up.”

There are multiple ways to save lives with Community Blood Center. One is the upcoming Charity Challenge blood drive.  In partnership with Theatre Lawrence and Central Bank, CBC will host this event where non-profit groups “compete” to win a monetary gift for their 501(c)3 organization. They recruit donors to give at a blood drive on Wednesday, July 26th, from 12 to 6 p.m. at Theater Lawrence. All donors receive a t-shirt and are entered in a drawing for a pair of Theatre Lawrence show tickets. The winning non-profits receive $1,000 for first place and $500 for second.

For more information about the Charity Challenge or to host a blood drive with your business or community group, contact Clark at 816-315-1389 or To learn more about blood donation, donor eligibility, and Community Blood Center locations near you, visit

“The Lawrence Community continues to support our cause,” says Clark, “and we appreciate the partnerships we have here and the support for opportunities like the Charity Challenge and, most importantly, the Lawrence blood donors.”