Tackle Sickle Cell: Blood drive raises awareness, makes a difference in New Brunswick

Since the start of the annual blood drive, 1,700 units of blood have been collected and given to as many as 2,500 patients.

News 12 Staff

Feb 18, 2023, 5:29 PM

Updated 518 days ago

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The Embrace Kids Foundation and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital have partnered to hold their 10th annual Tackle Sickle Cell community blood drive in New Brunswick.
About 200 people will make their way to the Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital to take part in the event.
Since the start of the annual blood drive, 1,700 units of blood have been collected and given to as many as 2,500 patients.
One in every 500 African Americans and one in 1,400 Latinos are born with sickle cell disease.
The event is typically held in February to address seasonal blood shortages. It also raises awareness about the need for unique blood type donations that can support diverse patient populations.
“We have the entire Rutgers student population that's going to rally together. A lot of diverse student organizations are out here donating, and they are making a big difference,” Armaan Saxena, executive director of the Embrace Kids Foundation.
Former Rutgers football stars Devin and Jason McCourty, who have supported the campaign for years, will also make an appearance at the blood drive. Devin McCourty recently completed his 12th season with the New England Patriots. Jason McCourty retired after 13 seasons and now hosts Good Morning Football on the NFL Network.
The McCourty’s hope that they can help continue to call attention to the issue and promote blood donations.
“Blood transfusion is essential for people that have the sickle cell disease. Being able to give back and work with a diverse group of individuals that come out and donate plays a large role,” said Jason McCourty.
“It’s been I think gratifying being a part of something a lot bigger than us,” said Devin McCourty.


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