By MADDY VITALE
The Sea Isle City Police Department and the Sea Isle City United Methodist Church are teaming up to host a joint blood drive Jan. 30 and support a worthy and vital cause.
“When you look at that, we are all part of society and our loved ones could benefit from it,” Police Chief Tom McQuillen said Friday about the partnership for the drive. “This is just another way to reach out to the community and work for local causes.”
McQuillen said police in the department are signing up to donate blood. While the church offers the blood drive twice a year, alternative with St. Joseph’s Church, he wanted his department to be a part of it.
“We are encouraging all police to do it,” he noted. “We are certainly going to try and get as many as we can to contribute.”
The blood drive will be from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the United Methodist Church Hall at 4102 Central Avenue and JFK Boulevard.
Donors will receive a coupon for a free cup of coffee and donut from Dunkin’. Walk-ins are welcome.
People may schedule an appointment by calling Norma Poole at 609-263-8025 or going to www.RedCrossBlood.org. When registering online enter the Sponsor Code “sea isle umc.”
United Methodist Church Pastor Melissa Doyle-Waid said she and others at the church are thrilled to be working with the police department.
“We just appreciate them so much and we are so thankful for their willingness to partner with us,” Doyle-Waid said. “It is so important that the people in your community have what they need in times of crisis.”
Doyle-Waid said that the church, along with St. Joseph’s Church have worked together to offer the blood drives for a very important reason.
“We work it out so that people donate as often as they can locally,” she said.
The pastor added that Poole is the coordinator from the church and has been organizing the drive since at least 2012 when she joined the congregation.
“She does a great job coordinating everything. Norma works very hard to make sure to keep it going,” Doyle-Waid pointed explained.
The police chief said there are many reasons why he likes the department partnering with other organizations. But when he looked across JFK Boulevard to the Methodist Church while they were doing a blood drive, he felt compelled to offer support.
When Doyle-Waid and the church was receptive to the idea, they met with a representative from the Red Cross who gave them startling statistics.
It made McQuillen feel even more determined to get out the word that more donors are needed and that the police department would do what they could to help.
“Two weeks ago, when I spoke with a representative from the Red Cross, she sent me statistics. Hospitals only have a three-day blood supply on the shelf,” he pointed out. “Typically, hospitals have a seven day supply.”
But what really struck him was what one person could do.
“One donation can save up to three lives,” he said. “As a department, this is the first time we have done a joint blood drive. It is an important part of our community outreach. We want to be a part of the fabric of the community.