The American Red Cross has an urgent need for blood donors this summer, as the COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented supply challenges amid this uncertain environment.

Additionally, despite states lifting stay-at-home orders and reopening, many blood drives at businesses and community organizations continue to be cancelled, as these locations remain closed or restrict the number of individuals at any location.

According to the Red Cross, now is the time to help patients fight back.

Those who are feeling well are asked to make an appointment to give by visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS.

Every two seconds, someone in the United States needs blood – kids battling cancer, accident victims being raced into emergency rooms and new moms with complicated childbirths. Unfortunately, donors are in short supply as only three out of 100 Americans donate blood.

While tens of thousands of donors gave blood in response to an initial blood shortage caused by this coronavirus outbreak, it’s important to remember that red blood cells must be transfused within 42 days of donation and platelets within just five days, so they must constantly be replenished.

What follows are some upcoming blood donation opportunities in the area:

• In Morgan July 14 from 12-6 p.m. at St. Michael's Church.

• In Wabasso July 15 from 1-7 p.m. at the community center.

• In Olivia July 16 from 12-6 p.m. at the Renville County government services center.

• In Lamberton July 16 from 12-6 p.m. at the American Legion.

- Photo courtesy of the American Red Cross