ROCKFORD, Ill. (May 22, 2023) – With Memorial Day weekend approaching, the Rock River Valley Blood Center (RRVBC) would like to remind the community it continues to face an urgent need for all blood types, and that need is exacerbated during holiday weekends. Holiday weekends can be a busy time for hospitals, while the blood center typically loses 150 units of blood by being closed on Memorial Day.

“Holiday weekends are always a challenge, as hospitals can see an increase in trauma patients, but at the same time, our supply dwindles because people are not donating due to travel or other commitments,” CEO Lisa Entrikin said. “We need 800 donated units of blood each week to keep up with the local demand, so we really urge individuals to please come in and donate.”

The Rock River Valley Blood Center is asking anyone feeling healthy and well to please schedule a donation appointment as soon as possible, walk in to one of the four donor centers in Rockford, Belvidere, or Freeport to donate, or visit a mobile blood drive this week.

The blood already on the shelves is what saves lives (blood has a 42-day shelf life), which is why maintaining a sufficient blood supply is essential to ensure patients in need receive optimal treatment.

Community members are encouraged to schedule an appointment to donate blood if they never have before, and return donors are encouraged to ask friends and family who have never donated before to give blood in support of RRVBC’s initiative to recruit 7,000 new donors in 2023 to fill the local blood supply in honor of the organization’s 70th anniversary.

Donors can make appointments online at or by calling 815-965-8751. Walk-ins will also be welcome. Organizations are also encouraged to call about hosting blood drives to help support the community need.