From June 24 to July 9, H-E-B and Carter BloodCare will host their 14th annual "H-E-B Challenge" blood drive.

The "H-E-B Challenge" boosts blood donations in the summer months, one of the lowest periods of blood donations throughout the calendar year. Last year, H-E-B hit a milestone with the blood drives. Last year's blood drive marked a cumulative 5,000 units of blood collected in the 14 years of partnership with Carter BloodCare, which has saved over 15,000 lives.

“More than 20 percent of Carter BloodCare’s annual collections come from high school blood drives, and that number drops significantly during summer months when schools are out,” said Carter BloodCare’s Linda Goelzer, director, public relations. “We really appreciate partners like H-E-B that energize volunteer blood donors, to make blood transfusion possible for patients, and at the convenience of a trip to the grocery store.”

Opportunities to donate blood in the Temple area will be:

1. Noon to 6 p.m. June 29 at the H-E-B located at 3002 S. 31st Street. For more info about the first blood drive event, contact Markeisha A. at (254)778-4820.

2. Noon to 6 p.m. July 7 at the H-E-B located at 1314 W. Adams Avenue. For more info about the second blood drive event, contact Valerie L. at (254)773-4145.

H-E-B and Carter BloodCare first partnered in 2002 to host donations at numerous H-E-B locations in central Texas.

Potential blood donors must be at least 16 years old with parental consent, or must be at least 17 years old to donate blood without parental consent. There is no upper age limit for blood donations. All donors must weigh at least 110 pounds, feel well on the day of donation, and present a valid government-issued photo ID.

It is encouraged donors eat a nutritious meal and drink plenty of water before donating blood.

For more info on donor eligibility and to make an appointment, call 1-800-366-2834, or visit Carter Bloodcare's website.

About Carter BloodCare

Carter BloodCare is a community based, non-profit blood center that provides life-saving transfusion resources to more than 200 medical facilities in 50-plus counties of north, central and east Texas. The 501(c)(3) organization is one of the largest blood programs in Texas, delivering more than 300,000 blood products annually to meet patients’ treatment requirements. Carter BloodCare’s services include collection, processing, specialized laboratory testing, storage and distribution of blood and blood products. The center is accredited by the AABB, including a laboratory with accreditation for molecular testing of red cell antigens. It is licensed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and is a member of America’s Blood Centers.