Hosting a Blood Drive

Hosting a blood drive can be one of the best ways to give back to your community. Not only do the donations collected benefit those in need, but giving blood can make a positive difference in the donor’s life. In addition, is a really fun club activity! You can easily make competitions and games out of a blood drive, and it is a great way to get a lot of people involved.

What is it?
A blood drive is an event that gives community members the opportunity to donate blood with the American Red Cross. Blood drives allow the Red Cross to collect blood around the country in order to meet the needs of our hospitals. Blood drive hosts are an essential component of the collections process. The host of a blood drive works closely with the Red Cross to ensure collection goals are met.

How does it help?
Giving blood is one of the simplest and most rewarding ways to help others in your community and around the country. There is a need for blood every two seconds. By hosting a blood drive, it gives courageous donors the opportunity to give back.

How do I get started?
In order to host a blood drive, the first step is to choose an appropriate location for the blood drive. Once a location has been selected it is time to contact your local American Red Cross chapter. However if you don’t have a location in mind, the Red Cross will be able to help you find one. It is important to plan the blood drive well in advance to ensure enough time for recruitment and planning. The Red Cross will be with you every step of the way to help make sure your blood drive is a success.

What next?
After you have contacted your local chapter, it is time for recruitment. There are many ways to recruit donors in your community. Some easy ways to recruit are posters and flyers. Ask local businesses to hang posters and flyers in the weeks leading up to the drive. The posters should include all the essentials of the drive (who, what, where, when, etc.) Never underestimate the power of face-to-face recruitment. A great way to expand your network is to get together a recruitment team. A recruitment team will help you reach more people than you could on your own.  Reach out to family, friends, and neighbors to help spread the word about your drive. Another easy way to reach many people is through social media. Set up an event on Facebook or use Twitter as a constant reminder about the drive.  Social media is a free marketing tool that will give you the chance to reach a lot of donors. Always encourage donors to make an appointment if possible, this helps lower wait time and improve donor experience. Most importantly, use your Red Cross Chapter as a resource. If you have any questions or suggestions throughout the process of planning your drive, do not hesitate to reach out.

See our activity guide on hosting a blood drive for more info!


Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood.

More than 38,000 blood donations are needed every day.

The average red blood cell transfusion is approximately 3 pints.

The blood type most often requested by hospitals is Type O.

The blood used in an emergency is already on the shelves before the event occurs.

Written by Doire Perot, NYC Member

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