Eighth annual "Fan Club" kicks off with a blood drive

PALM DESERT, Calif. - The Nightingale Society of the Visiting Nurse Association kicked off our annual Fan club with a blood drive today.

Gina Bikales is chairman of Nightingales and was excited to see the donations.

"When we started this eight years ago, we never dreamed it would become this large an event," said Bikales.

You can help by donating a new fan, air-conditioning unit or evaporative cooler. But that's not the only way you can help your neighbors in need.

"You can send us a check. We'll go out and do the shopping for you and make sure that someone in need has some cool this summer," said Bikales.

The Fan Club brought in the Bloodmobile to encourage people to roll up their sleeves and help save lives. Desert Blood Services always needs donations when the snowbirds are gone.

Sandra Cosico is a registered nurse and was a part of the Bloodmobile.

"During the summer months too, a lot of people go into a lot of physical activities and stuff and that's when things happen," said Cosico.

This is the first year the two causes were brought together.

"Both are such necessary elements in the health community in this area," said Bikales.

Dom Calvano donated a fan.

"There's always a need to keep people cool in the summertime. A lot of times they maybe can't afford to keep electricity on and different things happen, so we just feel like it's a duty to take care of them," said Calvano.

Billie McKay donated blood.

"Blood needs to be given every day because there's a lot of sick people in the hospital," said McKay.

And when it comes to summer heat in the desert, helping can save a life.

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