9 Ways You Can Help Those In Need #allin1day

I give because I can.

Did you know?

  • Every two seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood.*
  • The Red Cross has won three Nobel Peace Prizes, in 1917, 1944 and 1963.^
  • In 2013, the international Red Cross movement provided food aid for more than 6.7 million people and essential household and hygiene items for over 3.4 million people.`
  • The ICRC’s (International Committee of the Red Cross) water, sanitation and construction projects benefitted some 28.7 million people in 2013.`

Please join us in going #allin1day to help the Red Cross deliver essential aid to those in need.

How can you help?

I gave whole blood for six years before learning that I was an ideal platelets donor, which I moved to three years ago. I don’t give in memory or honor of a specific person, although it is amazing when you meet people who have needed platelets — cancer patients, car accident survivors or organ transplant recipients, to name a few.

Go all in with us on June 2, 2015.

CCC is in. Are you?

I give because I can, and I hope that if I ever need platelets, someone will give for me.

p.s. Did you know the Red Cross has several apps, including one for blood and platelets donations?

Statistics sources: *American Red Cross  ^International Business Times  `ICRC Annual Report

Pay It Forward,
Jaime

Let’s chat (on the Red Cross, Paying It Forward or otherwise):
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The Trapper Keeper Is Back! And Other Insights From Back-to-School Shopping

It’s officially back-to-school season, a $72.5 billion* celebration for retailers. CCC sponsored two kids through the United Way, a 1st grade girl and 5th grade boy. It was interesting to hit the stores for back-to-school shopping this weekend and see how much the supplies had changed, if at all.

It's back to school time!

Surprisingly little… While the smartphone cases were amusing, kids still need notebooks, crayons, rulers, etc. I was a little surprised by school lists being divided into two sections: bring to school and need at home. For example, the fifth grade student needed a protractor, but only for use at home. Are they considered safety hazards now? Or don’t they actually do in-class work anymore?

I realize that I was shopping for younger kids, but I was actually a little surprised at the lack of technology. There were no USB drives or electronic notepads, tablets or time machines (kidding on the last one). The only real additions to school lists of the past that I noticed were (low odor) dry erase markers and erasers. Schools must be replacing chalk boards with white boards. Otherwise, they were pretty straight forward.

One thing made me laugh: one school list specifically said, No Trapper Keepers allowed. They don’t fit in the desks. As a child of the 80s, Trapper Keepers were the coolest thing in school! I had no idea they were still around, so I had to look them up before writing this post. I may have to pick one up… for my kid, of course. 😉

trapperkeeper


Reader Participation

What was your favorite subject in school?

What was your favorite school supply?

Who was a teacher who made a difference in your life?

What did you learn in school that you remember today?

*statistic courtesy of the National Retail Federation

Cheers,
Jaime

p.s. Going back to school yourself? Don’t forget that CCC can help with resumes, cover letters, personal essays and more! Learn more.

Social media, marketing and writing, oh my! Connect with CCC.
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4 Reasons #GivingTuesday Is Succeeding (And You Can Too!)

Together we give | GivingTuesday
#GivingTuesday

November 27, 2012 was the inaugural #GivingTuesday. It makes sense. While Black Friday and Cyber Monday dominate headlines, America has long been committed to giving, especially during the Holiday season. Finally, some generous minds came together and dedicated a day specifically to giving back, kicking off the giving season.

Here are four reasons why this powerful movement is succeeding that your business or brand can use to succeed too.

  • Find support The minds behind #GivingTuesday knew this idea would be much more successful with others dedicated to its success too, so they reached out to a slew of like-minded organizations, groups and companies. Over 2,000 companies responded to officially become #GivingTuesday™ partners! Plus, even more companies and donors have stepped forward to match donations to specific charities and causes, making even more of a difference. When so many people, organizations and companies are committed to an idea’s success, it’s more likely to happen.
  • Be genuine #GivingTuesday is all about helping others. You can donate money, volunteer your time or skills or share the news about this effort with your social networks. The folks who got together to put this idea into motion want to help people all over the world give back, no matter what they have to give. This movement is about working together for the common cause of helping those in need. Be transparent in your motives: today’s digital world and social media landscape make it difficult to hide alternative agendas, which helps those who are real.
  • Spread the word While jumping on Twitter this morning, one of the first things I saw was a tweet from Bill Gates about #GivingTuesday. That certainly got my attention, and with 8,908,437 followers, a few others noticed it too. A few others, as in 6,812 retweets and 729 favorites. You don’t have to be Bill Gates though. #GivingTuesday makes it easy to become a social media ambassador, share its news and get involved. Remember, a great idea isn’t much good if nobody knows about it.
  • Make it easy to participate Point #3 delves directly into this… it doesn’t do much good to spread the word if you don’t make it easy for people to participate. At givingtuesday.org, you can easily locate a cause to support, utilize your social networks for good or take some course of action. Those on Twitter can search the #GivingTuesday hash tag to locate opportunities, and participating companies are encouraging employees to get involved. While you’re busy drumming up support, don’t lose momentum by making it difficult for people to participate. Remember, make it easy and people (businesses and customers) are more likely to jump in!

Learn from this wonderful and successful movement by noting the four keys above and applying them to your brand or business. Also, get involved and support a cause close to your heart! We can all make a difference no matter who you are or what you have.

Image credits: #GivingTuesday website

Happy #GivingTuesday!
Jaime

To Give or Not To Give…

After regularly donating blood for several years, the Red Cross contacted me regarding my high platelet count. They asked me if I would consider donating platelets, so I said sure. I knew that whole blood and platelets were always in high demand. They assured me that it was very similar to donating whole blood with a few differences.

A thank you gift from the Red Cross

Red Cross swag for being a first time platelet donor

Well, it was and it wasn’t. Platelet donation involves a bigger time commitment (typically 2 hours) and involves a little more machinery. However, it does still use a single needle in your arm. (Update: The Red Cross has gone back to a two-needle donation process.) It wasn’t painful although I did feel a little weird during the process. Maybe that was just me though!

My biggest problem was my body temperature. It kept falling below where it should have been, which alerted the machines. It seemed like a Red Cross technician was constantly coming over to make it stop beeping. (I almost felt like I was hoarding their time although they were really nice about it.) When the machine beeped, the needle would actually vibrate in my arm because my vein was hardening. It was a strange sensation, although not painful. It was more of a discomfort, because it made the needle entry into my arm feel tight.

Join the Movement

Donate blood or platelets today!

I was wrapped in blankets (including one around my arm) with a heating pad on medium heat on top of me. I was even given a heat pack to squeeze instead of a stress ball in order to warm up my arm. I did make it through the experience, and I’m glad I did it. Despite the body temperature issues, I’ll probably donate platelets again, because they’re always in such high demand.

If you don’t currently donate, consider the following…

  • Your platelet donation has the power to enhance the lives of up to 3 patients in your area.
  • With a shelf life of only 5 days, platelets are in constant demand.
  • In order to meet the patient needs in Northern Ohio, the Red Cross must collect over 300 platelet products each week.
  • You can donate platelets up to 24 times in a year and still continue to donate whole blood.

Have any other platelet donors experienced internal body temperature issues while donating? If so, do you have any suggestions on how to better regulate for next time (besides wearing a parka)? Ha! I would love to hear of your experience and any suggestions.

For additional information on donating platelets, visit http://www.redcrossblood.org/donating-blood/types-donations/platelet-donation.

Save a life… donate blood or platelets if you can!

*Want to read more about my platelets donation experience? Here’s an update four years in.)

Jaime