By Janice Eck
Photos by Janice Eck
(Victorville)– On August 7th, the International Footprint Association Victor Valley Chapter hosted a Red Cross Blood Drive at Victorville’s City Hall for the City Blood Challenge for the North Desert Cities. Competing with Apple Valley, Hesperia, and other surrounding cities throughout the High Desert, the Footprinters used this opportunity to benefit the community.
Rob McCoy, President of the Footprinters Victor Valley Chapter, explained the vision of the non-profit organization to High Desert Daily in an interview, “It’s a liaison organization that brings community members and law enforcement together and the general premise is that law enforcement needs the community to accomplish its mission. This organization serves to help build a bridge between the community and law enforcement so we can have mutual cooperation.”
Many donors took time from their day to give back to the community. Victor Valley College student, Tiffany Ruiz, took a few moments to speak with High Desert Daily before donating, “I thought, why not? It’s not taking money. The only thing it’s taking is time and I have plenty of that. And in the long run, it’s helping someone. I don’t know why more people don’t do it.”
Members from the San Bernardino County Sheriff Explorer Unit also came out to donate. Explorer Captain Kyle Schuler was also proud of his group who came to donate, “It’s awesome that we have four of us here. We have more coming later. It’s cool that they’re willing to give up their time to help other people.”
Cool indeed. It was surprising, yet refreshing to see so many young people taking time out of their day to donate blood and according to Claudia Rodriguez, Red Cross Account Manager for the North Desert Cities, most regular donors are high school students who are often away on vacation during the summer. The Red Cross is always in need of donors, but summer is when they experience the most shortages.
Rodriguez explained the importance of blood drives in the High Desert, “We don’t have a fixed location in the High Desert, but we’re looking for ambassadors to help us host blood drives. We are responsible for maintaining the blood supply here in the North Desert now as the majority of donors are miseducated and think that LifeStream is the only way to donate, but we’re here as well. We’re more local than LifeStream. We just want high schools and organizations in helping us with blood drives.”
If you would like to host a blood drive or find out where there is one near you, contact Claudia Rodriguez at (909) 859-7097 or email her at Claudia.firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also find information at http://www.redcrossblood.org/ .
For more information on the International Footprint Association Victor Valley Chapter, visit http://vvfootprinters.com/ .