Jewish Community Blood Drive planned at Young Israel

The St. Louis Jewish Community Blood Drive at Congregation Young Israel, in partnership with the American Red Cross and the Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry, will host an event for people to donate blood and collect food for those in need during the winter months. This marks the fourth year for the St. Louis Jewish Community Blood Drive, which is endorsed and supported by the Jewish Social Action Network.

Both a blood drive and a food drive are especially important at this time of the year. During the winter months, many people do not take time to donate blood due to illness or bad weather. The need for blood is needed for cancer patients, newborns and of course surgical patients.  

Bob and Judy Hellman started the blood drive as a chesed project that everyone can participate in and benefit from. Additionally, the American Red Cross has a community outreach program called Heroes In Training, which is geared to educate students on the importance of blood donation and how blood is used as a medical therapy.

Winter can be particularly difficult for the hungry as well. The Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry has seen an increase in the number of people relying on the food pantry. Joan Robinson, Program Coordinator for the Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry, is asking people to pick up extra items and to bring them to this food drive. Items needed are can fruit, can tuna, peanut butter, macaroni and cheese and cereal.

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This is the second year that the food drive is being held with the blood drive. Members of the community can also volunteer and work where needed on the day of the drive. Babysitting will be available for those with small children. This charitable event is open to anyone who would like to participate and will take place at Young Israel, 8101 Delmar Blvd. on Sunday, January 16, 2011 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. To schedule an appointment, visit (sponsor code YIJS) or call 1-800-RedCross. Walk-in donors are welcome, but appointments take priority.