The American Red Cross has launched the Missing Types campaign to raise awareness for lifesaving blood donations and urge the public to make an appointment to give blood or platelets this summer.

In Halifax County, donors will have two opportunities in June to donate blood including:

• From noon to 6 p.m. on Friday at Grace Baptist Church located at 1058 Buckshoal Road in Virgilina; and

• From 2 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 27, at Lowes located at 3603 Old Halifax Road in South Boston.

During the Missing Types campaign, the letters A, B and O — the letters representing the main blood groups — are disappearing from brands, social media pages, signs and websites to illustrate the critical role blood donors play in helping patients.

When the letters A, B and O vanish from everyday life, the gaps are striking. And when A, B, O and AB blood types go missing from hospital shelves, patient care and medical treatments are affected.

Blood transfusion is the fourth most common inpatient hospital procedure in the U.S. Blood can only come from volunteer blood donors, yet only three out of 100 people in the U.S. give blood. That’s simply not enough to help patients who need transfusions.

“Just last month, the Red Cross experienced a critical shortage of type O blood. When this happens, medical procedures could be delayed because blood products are not available,” said Cliff Numark, senior vice president, Red Cross Blood Services. “That’s why we are asking those eligible to help fill the missing types by making a donation appointment today. Don’t wait for the letters A, B and O to go missing from hospital shelves again.”

Donors can help fill the missing types by making an appointment to give by visiting, using the Red Cross Blood Donor App or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

More donors, and new donors in particular, are needed to maintain a sufficient blood supply. Donating blood is a simple process and only takes about an hour from start to finish.

Registration: Sign in, show ID and read required information.

Health check: Answer questions and receive a mini-physical.

Donation: Giving a pint of blood only takes about eight to 10 minutes.

Refreshments: Donors enjoy snacks and relax before resuming their day.

Donation appointments and completion of a RapidPass are encouraged to help speed up the donation process. RapidPass lets donors complete the pre-donation reading and answer the health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, by visiting from the convenience of a mobile device or computer, or through the Blood Donor App.