WOODWAY, Texas (FOX 44) – Carter BloodCare is counting on the employees of H-E-B stores in Central Texas to help encourage blood donation this summer, amid an urgent need.

This is the 19th Annual “H-E-B Challenge” blood drive, when the grocery chain prioritizes blood donation awareness. Carter BloodCare says summer is the season when blood donors are traditionally harder to find.

Since the pandemic, Carter BloodCare and blood programs nationwide have suffered the worst blood shortage in decades. Blood donors of all types are needed now, and new blood donors are encouraged to give it a try.

H-E-B started its community partnership with Carter BloodCare in 2002 with a large-scale, company-wide, multi-location blood drive event. Since then, H-E-B has helped collect 7,348 pints of blood. One pint can save at least three lives, so the grocery company can estimate 22,000 lives they have helped to save.

The H-E-B Challenge is now coming to the Woodway area. The blood drive is from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. this Thursday, at 9100 Woodway Drive – in the parking lot on the Carter BloodCare bus. For more information or to make an appointment, you can contact Kacy K. at (254) 751-0239.

Employees of each participating H-E-B store are challenging each other to encourage the most blood donors. The store with the highest ratio of blood donors to partners (employees), receives a traveling trophy. This type of competition equals the playing field between small and large stores. The store with the highest number of pints donated at their blood drive is also awarded a trophy. Carter BloodCare’s Central Texas staff also hosts an ice cream social for the employees of the two winning H-E-B stores.

Each blood donor will receive a free “Give for Texans” t-shirt, available in sizes M – 3XL, while supplies last.

Residents also can secure a spot at the blood drive by either calling 800-366-2834 or by visiting CarterBloodCare.org and clicking the “Donate Now” tab.