JOLIET – Will County State’s Attorney James Glasgow is partnering with Heartland Blood Centers and a local mother whose daughter successfully battled cancer to host a community blood drive in downtown Joliet at the end of March.
State’s Attorney Glasgow and Joliet resident Jennifer Babec are working together to bring Heartland Blood Center’s mobile coach to the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office at 121 N. Chicago St. from 8:30 a.m. until 2:30 p.m. on March 29.
The mobile coach will be located in the State’s Attorney’s Office parking lot directly across the street from the historic Rialto Square Theatre.
The State’s Attorney is encouraging anyone who works in or plans to visit downtown Joliet to take roughly 30 minutes to donate blood on March 29. Appointments can be made by calling Jennifer Babec at (815) 325-4282 or by visiting Heartland Blood Centers online at www.heartlandbc.org. Walk-in donors also will be welcomed. Every donor will receive a free pair of cotton, flannel-style lounge pants from Heartland Blood Centers.
“The State’s Attorney’s Office is an excellent location for a weekday blood drive because it’s in the heart of downtown Joliet,” Glasgow said. “Hundreds of people who work in or visit various government facilities, private offices and local restaurants walk by the office each day. I encourage employers to provide a little flexibility around breaks and during lunch to let people make what could be a lifesaving donation.”
The State’s Attorney is pleased to be coordinating this drive with Jennifer Babec, who is the top volunteer blood drive coordinator for Heartland Blood Centers. Jennifer, who lives in Joliet, has been coordinating drives with Heartland since 2008, shortly after her 5-year-old daughter, Taylor, was diagnosed with lymphoma. During Taylor’s three-year recovery, she required intensive chemotherapy treatments and 22 blood transfusions that would revive both her physical energy and her spirits.
Taylor is now 10-years-old, and her cancer thankfully is in remission. Jennifer, however, has continued to coordinate blood drives so there is an ample supply for other children who need life-saving transfusions. More than 800 donations have been collected during her local blood drives over the years. Heartland’s goal is to receive a minimum of 62 donations during the downtown Joliet blood drive.
“Jennifer and her family struggled through tough times during Taylor’s diagnosis and recovery,” Glasgow said. “This remarkable mother noticed how her daughter would bloom like a flower every time she received a blood transfusion. She is giving back to our community today by coordinating blood drives so that other children who are struggling through cancer treatments also have a chance to bloom.”
Heartland Blood Centers is an independent not-for-profit blood center serving 38 hospitals in a 12-county area including Kane, McHenry, DeKalb, Will, DuPage, Cook, Grundy, Kendall, Lee, Ogle and LaSalle counties in Illinois, and Lake county in Indiana. Heartland is the sole provider of blood and blood products for Silver Cross Hospital and Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center.
Heartland operates under a volunteer donor system and works toward collecting more than 172,000 units of blood annually with a commitment of meeting local blood needs. Participating in a drive with Heartland means that 100 percent of the blood donated is returned to the communities it serves.
For information on the March 29 blood drive or to schedule an appointment, please call (815) 325-4282 or visit Heartland Blood Centers at www.heartlandbc.org.