Chapter and Blood Services Partner to Share Red Cross Mission with Students

Last month, Central Plains Region opened its doors to the Red Cross Club from Franklin Elementary School in Wichita, Kansas. Sam Crawford, Education, took the local 5th Graders on a tour of the building, including Hospital Services where he showed them how the blood is packed for transport and stored in the refrigerators until it is shipped to hospitals throughout the state.

Then the students visited the Reference Lab where Nancy Wiebe, talked with the students about blood typing and even showed them what red blood cells look like under the microscope.

After the grand tour, Crawford let the students watch him as he donated blood. His goal was to help the students have a better understanding of what it is like to be a blood donor and give them an opportunity to ask questions. After his donation, the students followed Crawford to the Refreshment Area and snacks were had by all.

One Franklin student said, “When I get home, I’m going to tell my mom she needs to come here and give blood.” Music to Sam’s ears!

Melissa Crawford, Midway-Kansas Chapter, who also happens to be Sam’s mother, finished out the field trip by explaining what the local Red Cross Chapter does. She piqued the students’ interest by asking questions like, “I bet you don’t know what type of disaster Red Cross responds to the most each year?” But, a few of the students knew it was single-family house fires. She encouraged the students to take a Babysitting class when they get a little bit older, and talked about how the Red Cross helps people in the Armed Services overseas connect with their families in the states.

Sam donates blood in front of class.

Finally, Melissa Crawford gave the students an update on Red Cross’ efforts in Haiti, including the fact that it has been the largest global relief effort the Red Cross has ever been a part of in its long 129-year history. The day after the fieldtrip, these students began selling chocolate Hearts for Haiti. All money raised will be donated to the American Red Cross.

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