Blood donations are slow this time of year but the need is always there. The Texas and Oklahoma Blood Institute hopes the chance to win a seven-day Caribbean cruise for two will encourage people to give this holiday season.

One lucky donor will win a getaway from Cruises, Inc. and a gift card to help with ground travel expenses to the port of Galveston. Each donor is guaranteed to receive a nautical-themed T-shirt as well as health screenings. To qualify you must donate between December 1 and January 31, 2016

Texas Blood Institute's Wichita Falls donor center is located at 3709 Gregory St. Suite 109. The center is open Tuesday through Thursday 8:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m., Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. and Saturday 8:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Scheduled blood drives at various locations around the region can be found at

Oklahoma Blood Institute’s Lawton donor center is located at 211SW A. Ave. The center is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday’s from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. (there are also donor centers in Ada, Ardmore, Enid, Tulsa, OKC, Edmond and Norman). Scheduled blood drives at various locations around the region can be found at

A single blood donation can save as many as three lives. People with negative blood types are especially urged to give. Only 18 percent of the population has negative blood types, but those with these types must have negative type blood when needed. Oklahoma Blood Institute is a nonprofit blood center that provides every drop of blood needed for patients in 154 hospitals throughout the state.

“This time of year we typically see fewer donors,” said Daren Coats, vice president of western division operations, Texas/Oklahoma Blood Institute. “I urge the generous people of Wichita Falls, Lawton and surrounding areas to make blood donation a priority during this holiday season.”

Blood donations can be made every 56 days. Appointments are not required but can be made by calling Texas Blood Institute at 940-689-2400 or Oklahoma Blood Institute at 877-340-8777.

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