WIGGINS, MS (WLOX) - A home cooked breakfast, and a chance to save lives was all the incentive needed for people at St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Wiggins Sunday.
The Knights of Columbus held its quarterly blood drive to help the American Red Cross during a difficult time of year.
"The partnership that we share with St. Francis Xavier has been going on for many years," said Denise Smith with American Red Cross. "Generally they do two of them in our general need time frame. We are in that time frame right now, and so every pint that we collect today counts toward a critical shortage."
Smith says this summer's shortage period has been longer than usual.
"Generally what that is is a lot of people go on vacation in the summer," she said. "They're not thinking about donating as much as they normally do."
Knights of Columbus member Ted Renn has been organizing blood drives for years.
"I've been doing these drives for probably close to 20 years," said Renn. "Not here at St. Francis, all of them, I used to live down on the coast and belonged to Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church."
He says the response in Wiggins is smaller, but just as enthusiastic as on the Coast.
"It's just a smaller response here, there's a lot more people down on the coast." Renn said. "They're excited about it. We have them asking us here all the time, when the next drive is going to be."
Smith says people have multiple options for giving blood. If they give one pint, that donation could save up to three lives. But, there is another choice.
"Now if people do what's called a "power red", they give us two pints of red blood cells and that actually goes to help even more patients and even quicker because the blood is processed on site," said Smith. "We just take the red blood cells and that a lot of times goes to the NICU, it goes to babies. It goes to moms who had trouble in labor and delivery."
Smith hopes to see the partnership with the Knights of Columbus continue to help fill blood stocks.