SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The San Diego Blood Bank today solicited donations through the end of the month in honor of Father Joe Carroll, who will undergo surgery Feb. 1 due to complications with diabetes.
The president emeritus of Father Joe's Villages, which offers temporary housing and other services to the homeless, said he's using his own surgery to help raise donations for the blood bank.
``When I found out blood needed to be available for my surgery, it struck me that I wanted to make sure there was enough blood to not only meet my needs, but the needs of our entire community,'' Carroll said.
The blood bank said donors can let staff know they're donating in support of Father Joe and encouraged potential donors to give before the end of the month. The blood bank will keep track of how many donors give blood in support of Father Joe until Feb. 14.
``We don't always think of regularly scheduled surgeries like my own as needing blood,'' Carroll said in a statement. ``We have been facing a blood shortage due to the flu, and I want to get the word out to people to come and donate for me and for all of our neighbors.''
Those wishing to donate must be at least 17 years old -- or 16, with parental consent -- weigh at least 114 pounds and be in general good health, according to the blood bank.
Donations can be made at the San Diego Blood Bank's permanent facilities in Escondido, El Cajon, Vista, Sabre Springs, Carmel Valley and Mount Hope near downtown San Diego.
Mobile blood banks will also make day-long appearances in Santee, Lakeside, El Cajon, Ocean Beach, Chula Vista, Pacific Beach, San Diego State University and the University of San Diego between Friday and the end of the month.
Sample mobile drives between now and February 1 include:
1/19, Saint John's Catholic Church
1/20, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - Santee
1/21, St. Brigid Catholic Church
1/21, Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church - Lakeside
1/21, Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church - El Cajon