On Tuesday, January 9, 2024, Rhode Island Blood Center ((RIBC) hosted local elected leaders and hospital partners to celebrate National Blood Donor Month and spotlight the critical need for blood donors throughout 2024.

The aim of this press conference was to encourage the public to come out in donate not only in January but year-round to meet the constant need for this lifesaving product.

RIBC Vice President Beau Tompkins set the stage on the challenges that have been faced locally and nationwide with the blood supply. Right now, there is a critical need for all blood types as the supply is below the ideal 5 to 7 days. There is especially a need for Type O and Platelets.

Governor Dan McKee, Lt. Governor Sabina Matos, and hospital leaders from Rhode Island and Massachusetts joined Beau in spotlighting the critical need. The event also included video messages from Rhode Island’s U.S. congregational delegation, Senator Reed, Representative Amo and Representative Magaziner. RIBC’s partner, 3x Olympian Elizabeth Beisel capped off the video messages with a challenge to blood donors to donate at least 4 times a year.

The highlight of the event was the moving messages from Nancy Haight, whose son Ben received over 200 blood transfusions during his battle with cancer and RIBC volunteer/blood donor Darlene Olson.

Governor McKee also presented Beau with a proclamation declaring January National Blood Donor Month across Rhode Island and urging Rhode Islanders to donate.

RIBC is grateful for the support from our community leaders, hospital partners, staff, volunteer and blood donors.

We celebrate everyone who is helping in our lifesaving mission and encouraging the community to roll up their sleeves and donate throughout the year.