ASBP: Making the Impossible Possible
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Making the Impossible Possible

05/23/2018
By Cesar Fontanilla, ASBP blood donor recruiter, Camp Pendleton, Calif.
Hospitalman Reginald Granger poses outside the Armed Services Blood Program blood mobile during the 2nd Battalion 4th Marine’s blood drive. Granger recruited more than 50 donors to ensure the blood drive was a successful event.
Hospitalman Reginald Granger poses outside the Armed Services Blood Program blood mobile during the 2nd Battalion 4th Marine’s blood drive. Granger recruited more than 50 donors to ensure the blood drive was a successful event.
Navy Hospitalman Reginald Granger took on a seemingly impossible task when he decided to coordinate a blood drive for his unit, the 2nd Battalion 4th Marines, on March 7 before they deployed. Granger had to find eligible donors and encourage them to donate blood, understanding the ever-present challenge of potential high deferral rates from things such as unhealed tattoo work, low hemoglobin or travel to certain countries. Despite the obstacles he faced, Granger was able to find eligible donors and ensured the blood drive was a success.

“I wanted to do more and be more than your average enlisted Sailor,” Granger said. “So, I reached out to the Armed Services Blood Program to have a blood drive and support the mission of the program. I had a feeling many of the donors [would] be deferred, so I had to personally reach out to them and educate them. I made sure the surrounding units in the area also knew we were having a blood drive and were welcome to join. It’s the time and effort of making face to face interaction with my peers that made it possible to make sure they understood the process of donating blood.”

Granger is not new to coordinated blood drives. While in college, he coordinated them for his fraternity with a local blood bank agency and surpassed the minimum collection goal each time. His experience enabled him to overcome many of the common challenges of donor recruitment.

“Recruiting for donors is always a challenge. However, I’ve learned in the past that the best way to get donors to participate is by making phone calls and talking to them face to face. I’ve also posted flyers as a reminder to the donors of the blood drive, and made myself available for any questions. It makes a lot of difference when donors understand that they are supporting a great cause.”

Granger’s hard work paid off as there was outstanding turnout from his fellow service members. More than 50 Marines and Sailors participated at the drive and showed their support for the ASBP. Overall, 43 units of lifesaving blood was collected. The unit even set a new blood collection record for themselves.

When asked to share some words of encouragement, Granger said, “We are one community and need to look after each other. A lot of things can be accomplished when we think of others and not just ourselves. Saving lives is everyone’s responsibility.”

About the Armed Services Blood Program
Since 1962, the Armed Services Blood Program has served as the sole provider of blood for the United States military. As a tri-service organization, the ASBP collects, processes, stores and distributes blood and blood products to Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and their families worldwide. As one of four national blood collection organizations trusted to ensure the nation has a safe, potent blood supply, the ASBP works closely with our civilian counterparts by sharing donors on military installations where there are no military blood collection centers and by sharing blood products in times of need to maximize availability of this national treasure. To find out more about the ASBP or to schedule an appointment to donate, please visit www.militaryblood.dod.mil. To interact directly with ASBP staff members, see more photos or get the latest news, follow @militaryblood on Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, YouTube and Pinterest. Find the drop. Donate.

The Armed Services Blood Program is a proud recipient of the Army Maj. Gen. Keith L. Ware Public Affairs award for journalism.