Published by Kirby Winn on Tuesday, December 26, 2023 in News & Events

(Urbana, Illinois) -- This week: ImpactLife and WCIA invite all eligible donors to give blood in WCIA’s 9th Annual “Gift of Life” Blood Drive, held this week at ImpactLife Donor Center locations and culminating with a blood drive from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Thurs., Dec. 28 at MarketPlace Shopping Center in Champaign (see for hours, locations, and scheduling information).

The Gift of Life blood drive comes during one of the most challenging weeks of the year for the blood supply. While the rate of blood donation may decrease during the holiday season, the need for lifesaving blood components remains constant. To schedule, please call (800) 747-5401, or schedule online at or via the ImpactLife mobile app (

Dave Benton and Robert Reese (photo)
Dave Benton and Robert Reese

Robert Reese (Chief Meteorologist) and Dave Benton (News Anchor) were prominent members of the WCIA on-air team who shared their experience with cancer with colleagues and WCIA viewers before their deaths in 2012 and 2015. The station began hosting the Gift of Life Blood Drive in 2015 to help cancer patients, and all who require blood transfusions, during a challenging time of year for our region’s blood supply.

Cancer is the number one reason blood transfusions are given, with approximately 1 in 4 donations going to patients in treatment for cancer. More than 1.9 million people are diagnosed with a new cancer each year, many of whom will need blood during their chemotherapy treatment. Individuals with cancer may need blood transfusions due to anemia, low blood counts from treatments such as chemotherapy and/ or radiation, and/or blood loss during surgery. (Source: U.S. Blood Donation Statistics and Public Messaging Guide, published by America’s Blood Centers.)

“Good Giving” – opportunity to support food banks in addition to blood supply

ImpactLife Good Giving graphicDonors who give blood with ImpactLife this holiday season can help provide funding for food banks in addition to supporting the region’s blood supply. Now through December 31, ImpactLife will provide all presenting donors with a voucher to redeem for the donor’s choice of an electronic gift card or equivalent value donation to support food banks in the blood center’s four-state service region (including Eastern Illinois Foodbank).

“With our Good Giving promotion, we're offering donors the opportunity to increase the impact of their donation,” said Amanda Hess, Vice President, Donor Relations and Marketing for ImpactLife. “We know volunteer donors want to do all they can to support their community. Supporting food needs as well as the blood supply is a great way to give back at this critical time of year.”

Through Dec. 31, all donors who come to give blood at ImpactLife donation centers and mobile blood drives will receive a voucher to redeem for their choice of a gift card or equivalent value donation to support food banks. The value of the gift card or donation will vary depending on the type of donation procedure (for example, whole blood, platelets, or Double Red Cell).

For donations made Dec. 18-31

  •  Whole blood donation
    • $20 gift card or donation 
  • Double red cell donation OR plasma only donation
    • $25 gift card or donation
  • Platelet donation (and the donor has given platelets 2+ times previously with ImpactLife)
    • $25 gift card or donation
  • Platelet donation (and it is the donor's first or second attempt to ever give platelets with ImpactLife)
    • $50 gift card or donation
  • FIRST lifetime registration (all types) with ImpactLife 
    • $50 gift card or donation

About ImpactLife

ImpactLife is a nonprofit community organization providing blood services and emergency services providers to 124 hospitals in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, and Wisconsin, as well as resource sharing partners across the country. Services extend from southcentral Wisconsin to St. Louis, Missouri and from Danville, Illinois to Chariton, Iowa. (See a map of the ImpactLife service region.) ImpactLife operates 22 Donor Centers and holds approximately 5000 mobile blood drives annually to provide blood components needed for patient transfusions at hospitals throughout our region.

For more information, see and find us @impactlifeblood on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, Twitter, Snapchat, and YouTube.


About The Author

Kirby Winn

Kirby Winn serves as Manager, Public Relations for ImpactLife. He enjoys working with media across the blood center's service region to share the stories of patients who have been helped by the generous volunteers who support our mission.

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