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After giving thanks, give blood in Weston

The Red Cross is asking Fairfield County residents to rise to the occasion this holiday season of giving by donating blood Thanksgiving weekend.

On Saturday, Nov. 24, The Weston Women’s League (WWL) will sponsor its annual blood drive at Norfield Church Parish Hall, 64 Norfield Road, between 8 a.m. and 1 p.m.

The event falls on Thanksgiving Saturday, when the focus has traditionally been on travel, shopping, and post-holiday clean up. The women’s league suggests shifting gears by considering a blood donation instead.

Thanksgiving marks the start of a downward trend in blood collections that lasts through New Year’s. Thus, the need for all types of blood remains great during the entire holiday season.

“The Weston Women’s League is honored to once again host this life saving event. We know the holiday weekend is a busy time, but ask local residents to recognize that one pint can save up to three lives. A good turn-out can help bring the state’s supply back up to a healthy level,” said league member and drive chairman, Lisa Cicale Moskal.

Ms. Cicale Moskal also noted that statistics show there’s a 97% chance that you’ll know someone in need of a blood transfusion during their lifetime. Blood transfusions are used by a variety of people — cancer patients, burn and accident victims, and those undergoing preventative surgeries.

The blood drive has taken place for more than two decades with the Weston Women’s League at the helm, though it remains a community effort. And the community at large is to thank for their upcoming blood donations.

“Every donor counts — it’s a wonderful way to make a difference in someone’s life,” said Ms. Cicale Moskal.

Eligible donors must be at least 18 years of age, weigh 110 pounds or more, and be in generally good health.

Tips for a successful donation include drinking extra fluids — such as juice and water — the day prior to the blood drive and eating breakfast before giving blood.

In addition, donors should not do strenuous exercise before or after donating, nor drink hot liquids, smoke, or chew gum just prior to their donation. Remember also to wear comfortable clothes and to relax.

Donors are eligible to give blood again after a 56-day wait.

To minimize lines, donors are encouraged to make an appointment by emailing or calling Lisa Cicale Moskal at cicalemoskal@optonline.net or calling the Red Cross at 800-RED-CROSS (800-733-2767). Drop-in donors are welcome.

For more information, visit redcrossblood.org.

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