Congratulations are in order for Hamilton High School in Butler County. Community Blood Center (CBC) presented school leaders with a check for $1,000 Wednesday, Oct. 30 representing the award HHS earned in the inaugural CBC High School Leadership Grant Program for Blood Drive Excellence.
CBC is awarding $1,000 grants in five categories for the 2012-13 academic year. Hamilton’s National Honor Society, the student sponsor group for HHS blood drives, accepted the award for Most Improved. Hamilton has the highest number of eligible student donors among CBC blood drive high schools. HHS resumed a two-blood drive schedule in 2012-13 and registered 212 student donors, an 83% improvement over the previous school year.
“When you go off to college, we hope you will remember with pride the really cool things you did to help your community in high school,” Principal Doug Leist told the crowd of 30 NHS members gathered for the award presentation. “You will look back and talk about your experience doing a blood drive with NHS that helped save many lives.”
Faculty members Chris Napier and Tyler Belew serve as NHS co-advisors and co-coordinators of the blood drives. Both are Hamilton High graduates. Chris (2008) is a former NHS president and blood drive organizer. “This is a celebration for you guys,” he told the students. “It’s got nothing to do with Mr. Belew and me. It’s all about what you guys do to make the blood drives a success.”
Tyler Belew (2006) donated for the first time when he was a student at Hamilton High and continued to donate while attending Miami University. He remembers getting a phone call from CBC after the Greek Week Blood Drive. “I came home and played (the message) and it said your donation helped save a life at Reed Hospital in Richmond,” he said. “That phone call sealed the deal for me. You know you’ve done something important, but it really hits home when you get that phone call.”
CBC Account Representative Bill Roy praised all student donors for “an act of unselfish love and a commitment to the community” and thanked the NHS volunteers. “You really are the most important part,” he said. “You’re the ones that go out and drive those students to give blood and that’s what really matters.”
The advisors say NHS may use the grant money to fund scholarships and for NHS members to attend a NHS leadership conference in Columbus in the spring. Hamilton High will host its fall CBC blood drive Nov. 26 and its spring CBC blood drive March 28, 2014.
Hamilton neighbor Butler Tech was honored with a Leadership Grant for Most Donors in 2012-13. Emmanuel Christian Academy in Springfield received grants for both Highest Percentage of Enrollment participating in blood drives and for Red Cord Excellence (the highest percentage of eligible donors who qualified for the Red Cord Honor Program). Mississinawa Valley High School in Union City received the grant for Highest Percentage of Enrollment Runner Up.