Blood drive highlights locals giving back


Donna Dalke lays back while American Red Cross technician Kathy works on getting her blood donation on Monday, Dec 23 in Hillsboro.

Donna Dalke has been donating blood for about 40 years and has given over 100 pints. She said that it doesn’t cost her anything except a little time.

“It’s a very simple thing to do,” said Dalke. “And I always feel energized after I donate. Some people feel rundown, but I feel energized.”

“It’s like getting an oil change. You get rid of some blood so then your body regenerates and makes more,” said Kathy.

There are multiple benefits to giving blood. Each donation burns 630 calories according to the Red Cross website.

And, most importantly, blood donations can help those who are gravely ill and frequently save lives.

“One donation can potentially save up to three lives depending on the situation. It is such an easy way to help,” said Kathy.

Another benefit is that donating blood helps let others know about the need. Donna’s son Dustin now gives at almost every blood drive Hillsboro hosts.

“He’s been seeing me do it all these years,” said Dalke.

This blood drive had the added bonus of a free long sleeve t-shirt for each donor as well as a holiday meal with Dale’s sausage that Dale graciously donated, sides and a cookie.

“Most blood drives don’t have these kinds of meals. This is amazing,” said Kathy.

Another benefit of the local blood drive is that it served as a fundraiser for local students.

(from left) Sammie Saunders, Kori Arnold and Abby Fryhover, all Hillsboro High School basketball team members,
work the blood drive table on Monday, Dec. 23 at the Hillsboro City Hall.

The varsity and junior varsity teams earned money by helping out at the blood drive.

In addition to raising funds for their team, the girls had the opportunity to serve their community and make a difference.

“I teach them that we need to be focused on more than just what happens on the court. By helping out here, they see the importance of being involved in the community and participating in something that is bigger than us,” said head coach Nathan Hiebert.

Hiebert not only helped out with working the blood drive, but he also gave his first blood donation, setting an example for his students. Coach Dennis Boldt was also on hand to greet people, help them register and even served up meals and brought them to donors when they were done with their blood donation.

The girls seemed to enjoy themselves as well as they visited with guests and served them water, food and snacks.

“I love working the blood drive, not only does it raise money for our basketball team, it’s for a great cause that I am proud to be a part of,” said junior Dani Klein, a guard on varsity.

The American Red Cross provides the opportunity for different school programs to help out and serve as a fundraiser. There are four different school group ones in Hillsboro throughout the year. Each pint provides the group with $10 so it helps the Red Cross and the group involved as well as the lives that are saved by the donations.

The next blood drive for Hillsboro is February 10.

(from left) Kinsey Kleiner, Jessica Saunders, Tuesday Weisbeck and Dani Klein, all Hillsboro High School basketball team members,
work the blood drive table on Monday, Dec. 23 at the Hillsboro City Hall.
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