Giving Back: Spirit celebrates 20th anniversary of on-site blood bank in Wichita

Spirit AeroSystems and the American Red Cross of South Central and Southeast Kansas celebrated the 20th anniversary of a unique on-site blood bank with a reception and unveiling of a Spirit of Giving employee donor wall.

Spirit Blood Donor Center 20th Anniversary reception in Wichita, Kan.

Spirit’s partnership with the American Red Cross goes back two decades when Spirit Wichita, then Boeing, established an on-site donor center to make it easier than ever for employees to give blood. The on-site center supports the local community with almost 1,500 donor appointments each year.

“I’m proud to be part of an extraordinarily generous group of people who know the importance of giving blood and giving back,” said Duane Hawkins, Spirit AeroSystems senior vice president and general manager of Boeing, Defense, Business/Regional Jet Programs and Global Customer Support. “This donor center is unique in the blood banking industry. The thousands of Spirit employees who have visited the center over 20 years have made a huge lifesaving impact.”

Blood cannot be manufactured; it can only come from generous donors. The average healthy adult can donate one pint of blood every 56 days and save up to three lives with each donation. Spirit employees Steve Frese, John Hubbard and Stanley Campbell were recognized for giving at least 25 gallons of blood, meaning they’ve made over 200 donation appointments. By giving regularly, they’ve each saved up to 600 lives with their donations.

“Blood donations are critical to our community,” said Jennifer Sanders, executive director of the American Red Cross of South Central and Southeast Kansas. “We understand it can be difficult for donors to get to a blood drive event or American Red Cross facility on a regular basis. That’s why this unique on-site center, the only one of its kind in the country and located at the largest employer in Kansas, is so important to the health of our region. Spirit AeroSystems employees have collectively given hundreds of gallons of blood to people in need in our local community.”

Spirit employees can conveniently schedule appointments at the on-site center around their work schedule.