The ‘bloodmobile’ makes its way back to Cal Lutheran campus


Photo by Elisa Zody - Reporter

On Thursday, March 31, 32 donors came inside the bloodmobile to donate 1 pint of blood each.

Elisa Zody, Reporter

As a part of Better Together Week at California Lutheran University, the Community Service Center hosted a blood drive on Thursday, March 31. Donations took place inside Vitalant’s “Bloodmobile” which was parked outside of Ullman Commons between 11:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.. 

Sophomore Intern for the Community Service Center, Regan Laubscher, said it is extremely important to give blood right now because COVID-19 has made it difficult for people to donate. 

“We are in a critical blood shortage. Due to COVID there have been less blood drives and less people donating,” Laubscher said. 

According to the American Red Cross, there was a 62% drop in college and high school blood drives during the pandemic. Because of this, the United States is facing its worst blood shortage in over a decade.  

The last blood drive at Cal Lutheran took place during homecoming week in the fall of 2021. Laubscher said it was a huge success. So many people were willing to donate that they had to close before accepting blood from everybody. 

“Last semester’s turnout is what inspired us to have another blood drive this spring,” Laubscher said. 

Appointments were not required, but recommended to ensure a time to donate blood. 

Laubscher was one of the many students who gave blood in the fall and said that even though it was scary at first, she felt good afterwards knowing that she was helping somebody. 

Senior Cassidy Fukuda said that she has always wanted to give blood, so when she found out about Thursday’s blood drive on The Hub she decided to make an appointment. 

“They’re in desperate need of having blood at blood banks to give to people in need, so I really just wanted to give back to the community,” Fukuda said.

Throughout the process, donors were given free snacks and had the choice between two t-shirts after they donated. They were also entered into a raffle to win an air fryer, hydro flask, or a Cal Lutheran hoodie. 

Junior Jerry Tovar donated blood for the third time on Thursday. He said that afterwards, he felt really good knowing that he was making a difference in people’s lives.

“Emotionally, I was like goddamn I’m helping people. This is cool as heck,” Tovar said. 

An employee from Vitalant said that the donated blood will first have to be processed and labeled, and then it is usually used within 48 hours. Donors will be notified when their blood is being put to use.

“The cool thing about this blood drive is that Vitalant will send you an email afterwards to let you know when your blood is being used,” Laubscher said. 

Throughout the day, 32 people donated blood on campus. According to Laubscher, one donation can provide enough blood to save three lives. 

The Vitalant Bloodmobiles are being put to use seven days a week to help make up for the blood shortage. An employee from Vitalant said that they attend schools, businesses, church events, and many more. Because blood has a maximum storage time of 42 days, it is important that everyone continues to donate as much as they can, even when the blood shortage is over.

Tovar said that donating blood is not as scary as it may seem and he recommends that everybody donate blood if they can. 

“It helps people so why not, just say screw it and do it,” Tovar said.