COVINGTON, Texas — Students at Covington High School started Wednesday morning with a pep rally and an exciting announcement when Carter BloodCare surprised senior Bryson Blalock with a free car just for donating blood.
"We were just amazed by the fact that Bryson was drawn out of all of those people who gave blood to win a free car," his father Joel Blalock said. "It's amazing."
The car giveaway promotion aimed to bring in new donors like Bryson during their slowest months.
"From November 27th through January 7th, any donor who presented to give blood at an of the Carter Blood drives or donor centers was automatically entered to win the Chevy Spark," VP of Organizational Relations Veronica Moore said.
The blood bank has faced critical shortages since the start of the pandemic, which was just one reason Bryson and his family decided to make the donation.
"We knew with COVID not many people were going out and giving blood," Blalock said. "We had the opportunity and it was right here so there was no reason not to."
"During these last two years, since the onset of the pandemic, the blood shortage has just been chronic," Moore said. "The need for blood is constant and those patients needing blood can't wait on shutdowns from the pandemic or summer vacations or holiday seasons."
Moore said they have seen more people come in lately, but are not out of the shortage just yet.
"The need for blood is constant," she said. "We need to see at least 1,100 people come in every single day and that's a lot. That's a lot of people to give up their time, but that's what we need to see in order to meet the needs of those patients in the hospitals and those needing blood products."
Covington High School will host a community blood drive on Monday and anyone who is eligible to donate is encouraged to stop by.