Save a life this Christmas

It's the season of giving, and what better way to help those in need than with the gift of life. The American Red Cross is hosting multiple blood drives through the holidays and into the new year. And by donating blood once, you could save up to 3 lives.

But giving blood isn't easy for everyone, so the Red Cross offers several tips to get you prepared for the experience. Especially first timers.

-Get a good night's sleep
-Have a good breakfast and lunch, don't skip a meal before donating
-Drink extra fluids like water and juice to ensure a successful donation

According to the Red Cross, donors are advised to avoid eating fatty foods, and to instead eat plenty of food rich in iron and Vitamin C in the days leading up to the donation. Wear comfortable clothing with sleeves that can be raised above the elbow. And enjoy the experience! Spend 10-15 minutes relaxing in the refreshment area after your donation to rejuvenate and meet other donors who are also helping to save lives.

If you make an appointment, donating blood only takes about an hour.

Fore more information on blood drives near you, you can visit

Upcoming Blood Drives:

Mishawaka- Friday, Dec. 21 from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Chipotle on Main Street; Donate and receive a second burrito free with first burrito purchase

Elkhart- Monday, Dec. 17 from 12 p.m.- 6 p.m. at First Baptist Church in Goshen
Monday, Dec. 17 from noon-6p.m. at First Mennonite Church in Elkhart
Thursday, Dec. 20 from 1p.m.-7p.m. at Maranatha Fellowship Church in Nappanee
Friday, Dec. 21 from noon-6p.m. at Clinton Frame Mennonite Church in Goshen
Monday, Dec. 31 from 8a.m.-noon at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Bristol

Plymouth- Thursday, Dec. 20 from 1:30 p.m.-6:30 p.m. at Marshal County Sheriff's Office
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