Giving Blood. Saving Lives at TBT.
Temple Beth Tzedek hosted a Red Cross Blood Drive March 17 during the beginning of the quarantine. 35 people from all over the community came to donate blood—not just Jews. Linda Steinhorn, Chair of TBT’s Blood Drive for more than 20 years, said it was something really good during a difficult time. “We hold blood drives every 6 weeks now. TBT’s involvement started over 20 years ago, when we used to do it twice a year. But now with a greater need for blood, it is every 6 weeks, and people come from the entire community to supports us,” she said.
Linda had cancer in 1999, was very sick from the chemo treatments, and needed blood transfusions at the time. “This is my way of giving back,” she said, and added “It is the one gift you can give that does not cost anything.” She also has been a volunteer in Roswell Park Cancer Institute’s patient education program for more than 10 years.
Temple Beth Tzedek’s interim rabbi Moshe Silberschein was one of the blood donors. “I have always given blood because my father did. I started when I was 16, growing up in Detroit, and was also a blood tech in college,” he said. “The Mishna tells us that if you save one life, it is as if you saved the whole universe. And it’s not a coincidence that I gave blood this week in Buffalo, and my sister gave platelets this week in Nashville. He also explained how careful the Red Cross was in sterilizing the donation sites. It took a long time—from 1:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.–he said, but no one complained. “I was very proud of our community,” he said.