You Still Have Time to #ChooseYourDay and Donate Blood!

By: Patty Flowers, CEO of Wisconsin American Red Cross

As summer begins to wind down, consider making time to donate blood or platelets with the Red Cross. #ChooseYourDay to help save lives and make an appointment this Labor Day weekend. All presenting donors who give blood between September 5-7 will receive a limited-edition t-shirt, while supplies last! Patty’s story shows how you can make a difference in the lives of hospital patients and their families with this free and lifesaving gift.

“You want me in the delivery room with you?” I exclaimed!  Of course, it took me just two seconds to say ‘yes’ to my daughter when she was getting ready to deliver her first child at age 39. This little boy was our miracle baby as she had been told she most likely would never be able to become pregnant. As I’ve heard so many times before, once the stress of getting pregnant goes away, often a little one joins us. True for our family and I was so honored to be asked to be a part of this miracle that was unfolding before us.

On July 22, 2015, I was sitting with her at the registration desk at the hospital and then back in the labor and delivery department when the nurse asked if she would accept blood transfusions if needed. The question actually took me off guard because I hadn’t thought of her actually needing blood, but I blurted out “is it Red Cross blood”?  The nurse looked at me as if she’d never been asked that question before and then said “I’ve never been asked that before”. My daughter threw me a look like really Mom?, but she tolerated me asking. The nurse had to check to see who this hospital’s blood supplier was and when she came back in our room to tell me that indeed it would be Red Cross blood, I was very satisfied. Why?  Well, I know the rigorous testing and regulations that have to be followed by blood collections and I know how safe Red Cross blood is. Sitting in that hospital with my daughter, knowing she was in very good hands and that she had Red Cross blood waiting in case she needed it was quite comforting to me.

FullSizeRender (5)Michael Robert joined us at 1:06 PM on July 23, 2015 with a full head of black hair. Of course I think he’s the cutest, best baby, and I know I’m biased, but he really is! His delivery was not an easy one but my daughter never did need any blood. I am so grateful for the donors who had given those pints of blood that were waiting for her in case she needed it – it means as much to me as if she had been transfused.

I donate blood as often as I can through one of our Red Cross blood drives and I hope you will too. Knowing that one pint of my blood can save up to three lives is a very powerful reason to make me take the hour I need to plan for a donation, but now I equate it to that moment when my daughter might have needed someone else’s blood to help her. It’s personal, it’s powerful, and we need more people to decide that it’s an easy way to help someone else. Please consider donating your blood and we make it so easy to do it! Go to www.redcrossblood.org and find a drive near you or even simpler, download the Red Cross Blood app on your smart phone and you can register for a drive even faster.

100 Days of Summer. 100 Days of Hope.

Tiffany Circle Donates New Blood Services Van

“It’s been two years in the works, and it’s finally here!” exclaimed Aymee Balison, co-chair of the Wisconsin Tiffany Circle.  On April 14, 2015, members of the Wisconsin Tiffany Circle and their guests gathered at the chapter office in Madison, Wisconsin to celebrate the arrival of a new van for the American Red Cross Badger-Hawkeye Blood Services region.

The Dodge Pro Master, purchased with donations made by Tiffany Circle members in the region, has been on the road since January.

Tiffany Circle members Beth Anderson, Patty Flowers, Aymee Balison, Sara Horein, Marti Spittell Ziegelbauer and Lavina Harjani-Kuzuhara celebrate the new Blood Services van.

Tiffany Circle members Beth Anderson, Patty Flowers, Aymee Balison, Sara Horein, Marti Spittell Ziegelbauer and Lavina Harjani-Kuzuhara celebrate the new Blood Services van.

The van is on the road nearly every day, carrying supplies to and from blood drives around the state. Eighty percent of the blood donations collected by Red Cross are given through mobile blood drives like these; they are critical in helping the Red Cross meet the nation’s need for blood.  And, the new van has made a big difference.  In just the four months it has been on the road, it has allowed the Red Cross to collect an additional 1,500 units of blood – red cells, plasma and platelets that are being used to help patients in Wisconsin and beyond.

This project was very personal for Aymee, whose mother lost her battle with Leukemia when she was only 50 years old.  Though her mother died very young, Aymee explained that she was very grateful that blood donations had helped extend her mother’s life.  She advocated that the Tiffany Circle take on this project so that they could help others in a similar situation.

Today, the Wisconsin Tiffany Circle boasts a membership of 17.  With this project now finished, the members are now in the process of determining what their next project will be.

Please visit our website to learn more about Tiffany Circle and American Red Cross Blood Services.

The new van in action!

The new van in action!

Tiffany Circle: Following the Lead of so Many Great Women Before Them.

By Sherry Holmes, Tiffany Circle Director

SONY DSCFounding member of the Northeast Wisconsin Tiffany Circle chapter, Aymee Balison, held a reception at her home on Monday, April 15, to announce the 2013-14 project for the Wisconsin Tiffany Circle Chapters and to introduce Tiffany Circle to women leaders in the Green Bay area.

Tiffany Circle is a society of women leaders and philanthropists. These women follow in the footsteps of a long line of women leaders who have helped the Red Cross serve the American public in times of war and peace with disaster assistance, blood collection, safety training and countless other community assistance services. The Northeast Wisconsin Tiffany Circle Chapter is in its inaugural year.

To support Blood Services, the Eastern Wisconsin Tiffany Circle members are committing to raise funds to purchase a new Sprinter vehicle.  This vehicle will provide more opportunities for businesses, schools and organizations who want to sponsor blood drives at their location. For more information on Tiffany Circle, contact Sherry Holmes, 920-922-3450 or sherry.holmes@redcross.org.

Photo by: Women Magazine

To learn more about Aymee – Read her article in the latest addition of Women Magazine!

As a business owner and mother to four lovely daughters, Aymee Balison already has her hands full. But, Balison’s home and work juggle hasn’t stop her from getting deeply involved in area charities and maintaining the strong friendships she’s developed the last 15 years in Green Bay.

American Red Cross Honors Volunteers at Celebration of Support Event

Corporate Benefactor: Festival Foods – Nick Arlt, Public Relations Director. Pictured: Jody Weyers, Regional Volunteer Director, Nick Arlt, Kathryn Bracho & Barbara Behling, Communications Officer

The American Red Cross Northeast Wisconsin Chapter celebrated its volunteers June 12, 2012 with the Volunteer Recognition Banquet held at the Riverside Ballroom in Green Bay. The event was sponsored by Ameriprise Auto & Home Insurance. Two hundred and thirty-five volunteers attended the event. WBAY-TV anchor Action 2 News This Morning, Kathryn Bracho served as the Mistress of Ceremonies for the evening.

The night began with welcoming words and an organizational update from Barbara Behling, Communications Officer. Following Behling was Greg Novinska, Region CEO, with an update on blood services.

One-a-Week Club Awards were presented to businesses and clubs who committed to at least 52 donations of blood per year, or one per week during the previous year, followed by dinner.

After dinner the Volunteer Recognition Awards were presented to individuals and groups for their exceptional volunteer work.

Jack Davies, Ed McHugh Worker of the Year award for front-line volunteers with exceptional reliability to the blood program.

Humana, Business, Group or Organization of the Year, given to a business or group of volunteers for years of commitment to the American Red Cross Blood Services program.

Ken Frosch, Hilary Lesperance Award for outstanding support in the Blood Services Program.

Bryan Barbeau, Kerrie Forester Emergency Services Award for commitment and dedication to Disaster Services and members of the Disaster Response Team.

Bill Craig, Andrew Janssen Transportation Award, for outstanding work in transportation services for the American Red Cross and providing transportation for the elderly population and those with disabilities to help them sustain an independent lifestyle.

State Farm, The Outreach Award, for a volunteer or business in Preparedness, Health and Safety, Services to Armed Forces, Community Disaster Education or other areas that involve education and outreach.

Festival Foods, the Corporate Benefactor Award, for a business with outstanding commitment and dedication to the American Red Cross.

Michael Gallagher, the Mrs. Crane (Mary) Murphy Award, presented to a member of the Board of Directors for exceptional contribution and advancement of the American Red Cross.

Clara Barton Award: Eric Witcak, Nicolet Bank with Kathryn Bracho, WBAY, Anchor

Dee Hansen, Behind-the-Scenes Award presented to a volunteer who assists with essential office work at one of our office locations in development, facilities, reception and other behind-the-scenes jobs.

Bea Wettstein and Sharon Bryfczynski, Rookies of the Year, presented to a volunteer for exceptional level of service and has started within the past year.

Mike Petrick, Volunteer of the Year Award, presented to the individual who has demonstrated long-term commitment to multiple programs of the American Red Cross.

Eric Witczak, Clara Barton Award, the highest award of the night, presented to an individual who exemplifies the qualities of American Red Cross pioneer Clara Barton.

Congratulations to all the award recipients and thank you to everyone for your time, blood and support of the American Red Cross.

Click HERE to see pictures of all the award recipients.

About the American Red Cross:The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

Need for Blood Continues; Can you Help?

Guest Blog Post:  Dave Liethen | Donor Recruitment Representative American Red Cross

It’s the time of year when we all are looking forward to the snow disappearing.  This is a time of the year when the Red Cross usually has a stable blood supply.  However, the effects of this winter will linger long after the snow is gone.  Snow and ice storms across the country, including in Wisconsin have created a real crimp in the nations blood supply.  The bad winter weather across the country (remember the snow and ice in Dallas at the Super Bowl?) has caused the cancelation of over 750 Red Cross blood drives and over 28,000 scheduled blood donations. As a result, collections in the month of January were the lowest in a decade.  It’s critical that we do everything to can to help the blood supply.  Please help us do our part so that no matter how many patients show up at the hospitals in need of blood, they will be able to get it right away.

In addition to the blood drive sites we always go to, we have added number of new blood drive sites coming up so pick the place that works the best for you.  Some of the new blood drive sites include: the Resch Center with the Green Bay Gamblers Hockey Team, Bellin College in Bellevue and N.E. W. Lutheran High School on Green Bay’s east side. Check our website www.redrcossblood.org for more details.

 The high school blood drive season is fast approaching the end.  Please help the high schools reach their goals by encouraging young people to get in the habit of donating blood.  Most students can start donating as young as age 16 and weight at least 110.  Those students who want to donate and are 16 will need to have the Red Cross permission slip signed by a parent or guardian.  To get the permission slip, go to our website www.redcrossblood.org or stop by the school office.

Thanks for donating!

Dave

Recruit a Friend to Help Boost the Blood Supply American Red Cross encourages area residents to become advocates for blood donation

If you’re looking for ways to increase the impact of your blood donation, become an advocate for patients in need. Encourage your friends and family to become dedicated blood donors by sending an American Red Cross eCard, inviting them to donate with you, or coordinating a blood drive in your community or workplace.

 “You can help the American Red Cross increase the number of blood donors in the United States,” said Greg Novinska, CEO of the local Red Cross Blood Services region. “Only 38 percent of the population is eligible to give blood, so you can help us encourage those individuals to make blood donation part of their lifestyle.”Help maintain a stable blood supply by becoming a dedicated donor and encouraging others to give for the first time. Visit redcrossblood.org to send an eCard today. And through October, blood donors can register for a chance to win a 2011 Ford Fiesta through Red Cross Racing! Visit redcrossracing.com for more information.

Upcoming Blood Donation Opportunities

  • 10/25/2010: Green Bay Insurance Center Community Blood Drive – 9:00AM to 1:00PM, Brown County Library, Ground Level, 515 Pine Street, Green Bay
  • 10/26/2010: Iola Community Community Blood Drive – 12:00PM to 5:00PM, Community Fitness & Aquatic Center, Gym, Adjacent to HS, Iola
  • 10/28/2010: Pilsen Community Blood Drive – 12:00PM to 6:15PM, St Joseph St John Church, Lower Level, E860 Hwy 29, Luxemburg
  • 10/29/2010: YMCA Howard Community Blood Drive – :30AM to 4:30PM, YMCA Howard, Gym Overlook, 601 Cardinal Ln, Green Bay

Dates and locations of blood drives are subject to change.

How to Donate Blood

Simply call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) or visit redcrossblood.org to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license, or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age (16 with parental permission in some states), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.About the American Red Cross: Governed by volunteers and supported by giving individuals and communities, the American Red Cross is the single largest supplier of blood products to hospitals throughout the United States. While local hospital needs are always met first, the Red Cross also helps ensure no patient goes without blood no matter where or when they need it. In addition to providing nearly half of the nation’s blood supply, the Red Cross provides relief to victims of disaster, trains millions in lifesaving skills, serves as a communication link between U.S. military members and their families, and assists victims of international disasters or conflicts.

Green Bay wants signs on fence taken down

By Scott Williams • swilliams@greenbaypressgazette.com • October 2, 2010 Green Bay Press Gazette

Packers fan faces fines if ‘extras’ violating city ordinance aren’t gone by Monday

Green Bay city officials are throwing a penalty flag on the latest creation by a fence-painting Green Bay Packers booster. 

The city has no complaint with painter Christopher Handler’s Lombardi Avenue fence slogan, “Packer Fans Bleed Green and Gold.”

But officials are warning Handler that he could be fined in municipal court because of other signs affixed to his display that promote nonprofits and a football merchandise website. Those extras violate a city ordinance against business signs on residential property.

“A fence is a fence — not a billboard,” said Alderman Chris Wery, who represents the area and said that neighbors raised concerns.

Unless the signs come down by Monday, Handler and property owner Luke Ziolkowski each could be issued a citation with a possible $681 fine.

Handler said he cannot believe that city government has any issue with his fun and civic-minded exhibition at 1219 Shadow Lane.

“It just blows my mind,” he said. “Why can’t they just leave it alone?”

Handler said he was inspired to select the “bleed green and gold” slogan after donating blood. The exhibition also includes signs promoting the American Red Cross, as well as Disabled American Veterans and a merchandising website that sponsored the fence project.

American Red Cross spokeswoman Sarah Barman said her organization has no complaint with the city.

“We appreciate the work that Chris did,” she said of Handler. “But we understand the city’s situation.”