PEORIA — A regular blood donor, Stacy Borho was delighted when she found out that Mississippi Valley Regional Blood Center was opening a donor center at 1123 W. Glen Ave.
“I love the convenience because my whole world is out here on North Knoxville,” she said. “Them being on Glen is huge.”
The center opened Dec. 17 and will host a grand opening celebration with a ribbon cutting, tours of the facility and food at noon Jan. 28. The public is invited.
Borho donates as often as she can because she knows the impact it has on the community.
“I’m one of those people who likes to help other people,” she said. “When you learn that you are impacting two or three lives when you give blood and it only takes 45 minutes, it’s a no-brainer. It’s totally worth it.”
The new blood center is an effort to make it more convenient for people to give blood frequently. Now that MVRBC is supplying blood products to all the hospitals in central Illinois, it is working to raise the number of area donors helping it meet the demand. Currently some blood products are coming from donors outside the area, said Kirby Winn, director of public relations for MVRBC.
“The goal is to balance collections with product utilization,” he said.
Donors can now walk into the blood center any time it’s convenient. Its hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, and 7 a.m. to noon on Saturday. Platelets can also be donated every other Sunday from 7 to 9:30 a.m. To schedule an appointment, call 322-6168, or visit www.bloodcenter.org.
Before the center opened, MVRBC collected area donations through mobile blood drives. Borho found out MVRBC was taking over for the Red Cross when her employer, INB Bank, sponsored a mobile blood drive. Her first donation to MVRBC was immortalized when she agreed to be photographed for promotional materials. Her image is on a poster seen by everyone who walks into the new blood center.
Since that first donation almost a year ago, Borho has recruited others to join the effort.
“I actually recruited my father. We used to have a daddy/daughter date where we would give blood together,” said Borho. “Then he learned he could do double reds, donate two pints of blood in one sitting. I can’t do that because I don’t weigh enough. And then he learned how often cancer patients need platelets. He was super excited and went and did that.”
Borho said her father is also delighted with the new donor center.
“They had just opened and he was so excited he went over there to check it out right away.”
Leslie Renken can be reached at 686-3250 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter.com/LeslieRenken, and subscribe to her on Facebook.com/leslie.renken.