The American Red Cross is encouraging all eligible donors to make a lifesaving commitment to donate blood to help ensure a sufficient blood supply in the new year. Starting this month, the Red Cross will kick off "National Blood Donor Month".

January is one of the most difficult times of the year to collect enough blood products to meet patient needs. Severe winter weather may result in canceled blood drives, and seasonal illnesses, like the flu, can cause donors to be temporarily unable to give.

Eligible donors with types O, B negative and A negative blood are encouraged to donate double red cells where available. During a double red cell donation, two units of red cells are collected while most of the plasma and platelets are returned to the donor.

To make an appointment to donate blood, download the free Red Cross Blood Donor App form app stores, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:

  • Quasqueton - Jan. 16th // Quasqueton City Hall 8 AM till 12 Noon
  • Waterloo - Jan. 20th - 21st // Waterloo Blood Donation Center 1 PM to 6 PM
  • Waterloo - Jan. 23rd // Waterloo Blood Donation Center 8 AM 12 Noon
  • Waterloo - Jan. 27th // Waterloo Blood Donation Center 1 PM to 6 PM
  • Oelwein - Jan. 22nd // Community Plaza 1 PM to 6 PM
  • Vinton - Jan. 25th //  Vinton Skate and Activities Center 1 PM to 6 PM
  • Marble Rock - Jan 27th // Community Center 2 PM to 6 PM
  • Evansdale - Jan 28th // AMVETS Hall 1 PM to 6 PM

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters. It supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood, teaches skills that save lives, provides international humanitarian aid and supports military members and their families.

The Red Cross is a not-to-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit them on Twitter at @RedCross.