FALL 2014 | Read the latest news with NCBB
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In the News

  1. Congratulations to the Polaris ATV Winner!
  2. IBR Elects New Chair to Board of Directors
  3. Ebola Virus and Blood Donation

Mission to Save Lives

  1. School is Back in Session
  2. Mark your Calendar for Giving Tuesday
  3. Big Red Welcome
  4. UNL Blood Drive a Success!
  5. Donors Step Up
  6. Saving Lives on Date Night

Values in Action

  1. Santa Saturday
  2. Blood Typing at Community Health Fair
  3. Blood Collectors Week

In the Spotlight

  1. Social Media Buzz Room
  2. Healthy Holiday Dessert
  3. Coordinator Spotlight
Lori Whyrick, blood donor; Ellen DiSalvo, President, Nebraska Community Blood Bank; Kathy Hill, Chair, Nebraska Community Blood Bank Advisory Board; Andy Detlefsen, Chair, Innovative Blood Resources Board of Directors

Congratulations to the Polaris ATV Winner!

Hundreds stepped up to give blood in the month of July for a chance to win a Polaris ATV. Our lucky winner, chosen at random, was Lori Whyrick. Lori was presented with the Sportsman 850 Polaris Pursuit Camo and thanked for her support in helping to save lives in her hometown of Lincoln, Nebraska.
This is the third consecutive year, Minnesota-based Polaris Industries, Inc. partnered with Memorial Blood Centers (MBC) and Nebraska Community Blood Bank (NCBB), divisions of Innovative Blood Resources (IBR), to help promote the cause of blood donation.
Ellen DiSalvo, President of Nebraska Community Blood Center, noted “We are able to maintain a reliable blood supply for our community thanks to the generosity of all of our blood donors and to generous business partners like Polaris Industries. We are very grateful for Polaris’ support of our summer campaigns when blood donations are typically low. This ATV donation was terrific! We are honored by the company’s commitment to our life-saving mission.”

IBR Elects New Chair to Board of Directors

IBR elected Andrew Detlefsen to serve as Chair of the Board of Directors. The board, with representation from IBR's two divisions MBC and NCBB, is charged with governance and financial oversight to ensure IBR is effectively fulfilling its mission of saving lives. “Andy has spent the last 10 years promoting and supporting Nebraska Community Blood Bank, sharing his time and expertise,” said Ellen DiSalvo, President of the Nebraska Division of IBR. “We are so blessed to have such an amazing advocate for Innovative Blood Resources.”
Detlefsen, Vice President of Business Banking at Wells Fargo in Lincoln, served as Vice-Chair of the board for the past two years and previously as president of the NCBB Board of Directors. “As a loyal blood donor and active board member, I am honored to be contributing to Innovative Blood Resources in a new capacity,” said Detlefsen. “I look forward to continuing my commitment to provide guidance and financial expertise in support of the organization’s vision to be the best blood center in America.”

Ebola Virus and Blood Donation

As the Ebola outbreak in Africa unfolds in the national spotlight and captures attention across the world, many questions continue to be raised about the safety of blood donation. At IBR, it is our mission to maintain a safe and stable blood supply—to protect both donors and recipients. We are closely following the recommendations and advisories coming from the CDC and watching carefully the actions being taken by state departments of health in Minnesota, Nebraska, and Wisconsin, among others.
The message to those who volunteer to give generously at one of our 14 donor centers or at any one of the hundreds of community blood drives we host each month is clear: as a blood donor, you are not at risk of contracting the Ebola virus through the donation process. Giving blood is a safe process when you are healthy and well. Get the facts on Ebola from the CDC.
Ensuring the Safety of the Blood Supply
Although there is no documented case of the transmission of the Ebola virus through blood transfusion, IBR has begun to take precautionary measures to protect the safety of our patients, donors, and staff. We are asking individuals to refrain from donating blood for 28 days if public health authorities have warned the individual of possible exposure to the Ebola virus. Notices alerting donors to the additional measures are posted at all donation sites in Minnesota and Nebraska.
In addition, several guidelines already in place by the FDA help ensure giving blood is safe and easy for all:
  • Current deferral guidelines prohibit individuals in the U.S. from donating blood for at least one year due to their potential exposure to malaria in all the West African countries also affected by Ebola.
  • If you aren’t feeling well, then you will be asked not to donate.
  • If your temperature, blood pressure or pulse is out of the normal range, then you will be asked not to donate.
Key staff at IBR is continuously monitoring this ever-evolving Ebola epidemic in Africa and will promptly adhere to any guideline changes set by the FDA.
Photo credit: Centers for Disease and Prevention (CDC)

School is Back in Session

NCBB staff helped students kick-off the school year with the Second Annual High School Workshop. A dozen students from Lincoln and other area high schools came together for a full day of training to learn how to organize, promote, and host a successful blood drive at their schools. Held this year at Bryan Health East in Lincoln, students also had an opportunity to tour the neonatal unit and listen to the personal story from one grateful mom whose daughter’s life was saved through blood donation.
Student leaders took back to their schools the skills they need now to assemble a team to organize blood drives, recruit their peers to be blood donors, and work with faculty and staff advisors to promote the event and ensure its success. The workshop ultimately empowers students to give back to the community, and enhances their leadership and customer service skills.
Left: Student leaders attended NCBB’s Second Annual High School Workshop; Right: Students lined up to learn their blood type

Did you know?
  • High school blood drives represent approximately 10% of the blood we collect annually.
  • By hosting blood drives, high schools can earn scholarship funds to award to graduating seniors for continuing their education.
Get involved and learn more about our High School Program, contact us.

Mark your Calendar for Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday is fast approaching. NCBB wants you to take time on the National Day of Giving, Tuesday, December 2 to schedule your holiday blood donation!
Maintaining a stable blood supply around the holiday time can be challenging as many donors escape the cold weather or head out of town to see family, but the need for blood at local hospitals doesn’t change.

Schedule your donation today at NCBB.ORG and give the gift of life.

AND – you may know that we see our greatest need, with fewer donations scheduled, over the winter holidays. So this year, between December 21, 2014 – January 4, 2015 donors will receive a long-sleeve shirt.

Big Red Welcome

University of Nebraska—Lincoln (UNL) kicked off the 2014–15 school year with the Big Red Welcome in September and NCBB was right there to take part in the fun.

The annual street festival took place on campus, in front of Memorial Stadium, and was attended by more than 10,000 students. Staff distributed candy and cards with the dates of upcoming drives on campus. There were a lot of questions from students eager to roll up their sleeves and support the cause.
Ashley Ryan and Rachel Barth ready to welcome students at UNL and help them learn more about NCBB

UNL Blood Drive a Success!

University of Nebraska—Lincoln (UNL) stepped up to donate blood with NCBB during the Homecoming Blood Drive in September. The three-day drive held on City Campus brought in 405 units of blood. In addition, 68 units were collected at a blood drive held on East Campus.

The UNL Homecoming Drive, which is held in partnership with the American Red Cross, is the largest drive NCBB hosts. Students who registered to donate with NCBB received a UNL Huskers t-shirt.
Left: Annie McKeighan and Molly Nelsen, members of Gamma Phi Beta, showing off their NCBB UNL Homecoming shirts; Right: First-time blood donor, ­Brandon Nichols, donated on behalf of his AGS Fraternity
In response to a local trauma in Lincoln, NCBB put out an urgent call for AB blood donors and Eric Barth answered the call! Eric came in the very next day to donate blood. Thank you, Eric, and to all the donors who step up to give!

Saving Lives on Date Night

One couple used their date night to save lives! Aaron and Janice Rezac gave blood together during the NCBB Saltdogs Blood Drive in August. The couple was excited to save lives while spending time with each other.

Those who presented to donate during the event received free tickets to the Saltdogs game, a t-shirt, and a coupon for a free beverage from Lazlo’s Brewery.

The Lincoln Saltdogs had a successful season—winning the Central Division Championship and making the playoffs for the first time since 2010!
Aaron and Janice Rezac spent date night giving blood

Santa Saturday at NCBB

You better watch out, you better not cry—because Santa Claus is coming to NCBB!

Santa Saturday
Saturday, December 13
9:00 AM - 11:30 AM 
NCBB Donor Center
100 North 84th Street
Lincoln, NE 68505
All community members are invited to visit with Santa and participate in other family-friendly activities. Those in attendance will receive a photo memory from their visit with Santa, while children of all ages will have the chance to create a holiday craft and enjoy juice and cookies.

Please consider bringing a donation of wrapping supplies to help local children have a very, merry holiday season. We’ll be collecting items, such as: bags, tissue paper, tape, wrapping paper, etc. to donate to CEDARS, a local nonprofit that helps provide a safe and secure place for 2,500 children and youth every year.
Jim Hogg, a regular NCBB blood donor, attended the health fair with his wife and children

Blood Typing at Community Health Fair

Over 40 people lined up to learn their blood type at the Union Bank’s Health Fair held at Southeast Community College. In addition to blood typing, NCBB staff was on hand to talk about the importance of giving blood and was impressed by how many regular blood donors attended the event. 

Blood Collectors Week

The NCBB Collections staff are the ones who greet everyone with a smile and make every donor feel comfortable while making a life-saving donation. During our recent week-long celebration—Blood Collectors Week—we recognized the team and thanked them for all they do, every day, to help ensure a positive experience for all of our donors.

Left: Sheryl Golden recognized with a tumbler and candy in appreciation for all she does for NCBB; Right: Mandy Rivett and Nicole Westergaard celebrate Blood Collectors Week 

Social Media Buzz Room

Here's a snapshot of what's been happening on our social media pages. Click on any image to see the live post!
Top: NCBB Collections employees celebrate platelet donor Jack Swanson's 80th Birthday; Bottom left: Eric is a proud double red donor at the UNL Homecoming drive; Bottom right: UNL Students stepping up to give at the Corn Bowl Blood Drive

Healthy Holiday Dessert

Tania McVean of IBR’s Client Services department shares a healthy holiday dessert that everyone is sure to love!

Cookies, pies, and candy—it seems like desserts are all around us during the holiday season. If you want to cut the calories without losing the flavor, try this Low Fat Fudgy Brownie Pudding. It’s brownie on top and pudding on the bottom. It’s one of my favorites!

Low Fat Fudgy Brownie Pudding

9 servings, 165 calories, 2 grams of fat

Recipe Ingredients:

¾ cup flour
¾ cup sugar
1½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1/3 cup + ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa
½ skim milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup brown sugar
1¾ cup boiling water

  • Spray large soufflé bowl or pan with cooking spray.
  • Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and 1/3 cup of cocoa in a bowl.
  • Combine milk and butter in a separate bowl and microwave until butter melts.
  • Then, add vanilla. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Spoon batter into greased soufflé bowl or pan.
  • In a separate bowl, combine brown sugar and ¼ cup cocoa. Sprinkle over batter.
  • Then, pour boiling water over top – DO NOT MIX. 
  • Bake 30-35 minutes at 350.
  • Then, serve and enjoy this low calorie dessert!

Coordinator Spotlight with NCBB

Tanya Lebsock has been coordinating blood drives with NCBB since 1999. Currently, she is the Blood Drive Coordinator for Union Bank-Pine Lake and Union Bank-Calvert. 

Q&A with Tanya

Q.  Do you know someone who’s received blood?
A.  Yes, my sister.

Q.  Why did you start coordinating blood drives?
A.  There was a period of time when I could not donate blood due to a stint with cancer. Becoming a blood drive coordinator was one way I could still help out.

Q.  What is your best tip for coordinating a successful blood drive?
A.  I have 90% of the timeslots filled with standing appointments, which almost guarantees a full blood drive each time with loyal donors.

Q.  How often do you host blood drives?
A.  Generally every eight weeks.

Q.  What’s your favorite part about partnering with NCBB?
A.  The people. Everyone we work with is so nice and professional. It’s good to know that our donations go directly to our community.

Q.  Do you have any hobbies?
A.  I like to spend time with my family (and dogs), walking, and reading.

Q.  What is your favorite food?
A.  I love just about any kind of dessert and Mexican food. LaPaz is a great source!

Q.  What’s your favorite place to go in town?
A.  I really enjoy walking around Holmes Lake. They have great trails and scenery.

Q.  What is your blood type?
A.  A+
If you would like more information on the stories presented or have suggestions for articles, please Contact Us.
Copyright ©2014 Nebraska Community Blood Bank. All rights reserved.

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