2013-2014 Update

Wow, it’s been a long time since we’ve posted – it has been a very busy year for the Blood Drives United Team! Here’s all that’s happened in the 2013-14 academic year:

  • Improved relations with the American Red Cross to enhance donor experience at blood drives
  • Undertook a mission to write a petition challenging the FDA’s MSM policy – any male who has ever had sex with another male is prohibited from donating blood for life. After our petition only received a couple thousand signatures, we adjusted our approach to raising community awareness about the MSM policy. Want to learn more? Visit our page on our website at http://www.umich.edu/~bloodbat/msm.html or contact us at blooddrivesunited@umich.edu
  • Had an article published in the Michigan Daily Newspaper about the MSM policy – http://michigandaily.com/opinion/04viewpoint-bleed-equality09
  • Competed in our 32nd Blood Battle against the Ohio State University – WE WON: UM 2575 pints, OSU 2270 pints
  • Every one of our drives during Blood Battle took the form of a sponsor drive. Any man ineligible to donate because of the MSM policy could bring a donor to donate on his behalf, a visual representation that without this discriminatory policy twice as much blood could have been collected
  • One chair graduated and three more were added to the team between the fall and winter semesters
  • Competed against Michigan State University during Face Off – WE WON: UM 1231 pints, MSU 1198 pints
  • Two chairs graduated in May, leaving five dedicated ladies to run Blood Drives United
  • Currently we are holding one blood drive each month during the summer and are preparing for Blood Battle 2014!
  • Photo time:

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The five happy Blood Battle 2013 chairs in the Big House during the UM vs OSU football game

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Proudly hoisting the trophy in the air after officially winning Blood Battle! Sadly, our football team was not as successful and lost to OSU

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Six of the seven chairs during the Face Off 2014 competition

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A glimpse at our MSM policy efforts, featuring t-shirts “I Helped” and “I Wanted to Help” as well as buttons declaring “Bleeding for Equality”

We are excited for the upcoming school year and all that it will bring! But first, it’s summer.

Always bleeding maize and blue <3

 

#BleedforEquality

Hi everyone!

We want to update you on our latest blood drive on campus. We are having our very 1st protest drive regarding the MSM policy on Monday, March 25, from 12-6pm in the Vandenberg room of the Michigan League.

You can sign up here to make an appointment (sponsor code: goblue).

Read on to find out more about the MSM policy and what we’re doing:

The FDA currently has a lifetime deferral from giving blood on men who have had sex with other men since 1977. Blood Drives United, a student organization, is in the midst of planning a movement regarding this current blood donation policy. The particular issue has not been ignored, and we are often the targets of attacks from dissenters. We want to state firmly that we believe the policy is discriminatory, and have begun to look for support from students, student leaders on campus, and the administration over the past two years.

In order implement a change in the pre donation questionnaire we suggest that the inherently discriminatory question with one that states “Have you had unprotected sexual contact with a new sexual partner in the past 12 weeks?” hereby eliminating the deferral base on sexual orientation, but on behavior alone. A petition will be created in order to record the number of supporters of this initiative. The petition will be available at all blood drives on campus along with various events on campus in the fall.

Our hope is to take this student driven initiative nationwide, with the help of the blood drive competitions; Blood Battle against the Ohio State University in the fall semester, and the Big Ten Blood Challenge in the winter semester, to increase the availability of the petition. We are excited by the potential to make a change with this initiative starting at the University of Michigan.

Tweet at us with #BleedforEquality and/or upload a photo of you to Facebook showing your support!

Escapade!

Come on out to Escapade! tonight in the Michigan Union from 7-11.Join 6,000 of your closest friends to do such fun activities as a roller coaster simulator, arts and crafts, try a TON of free food, check out the student organizations, and listen to live bands and student performers.Blood Battle will be in the basement of the Union, so stop by and say hi to Chelsea and other Blood Battle Fanatics.

New Donation Opportunity!

Hello Wolverines and Ann Arborites!

There is a brand new donation opportunity coming up in August. On August 17th, there will be a blood drive in the Anderson Room on the 1st floor of the Michigan Union from 10 am – 4 pm. All donors have the opportunity to win a $500 gas card (but you don’t need more of an incentive than saving lives, do you?). Don’t worry! There are 76 days in between this drive and the start of Blood Battle, so you won’t have to miss out on donating during Blood Battle (don’t forget, it runs from November 1st to 16th this year).

Bleeding Maize and Blue,

BB12

Looking to get involved with Blood Battle this fall? Email bb12chairs@umich.edu, and start making a difference.

Emergency Need

The American Red Cross has recently announced that blood donations are at the lowest levels they have been in 15 years. Appeals to the public have provided a temporary stopgap, but have not eliminated the need. The situation is critical, and there is an ongoing emergency need for donors. Please donate if you are eligible, even if you never have before. It is a very rewarding experience and you can save up to three lives every time you donate.

Bleed Maize and Blue!