Every zero waster has some hobbies from their "before" days that they don't want to give up but need to convert over to a zero waste routine. For me, that was donating blood. I got my gallon pin this month and won't be stopping nay time soon! As you can imagine though, anything involving the medical system usually also involves a lot of waste - with donating blood being no exception. So I have come up with a "Blood Donation Kit" I bring with me each time I give.
This kit will not eliminate all the waste produced and you shouldn't have allusions that it will. Donating blood though is so important that it should not be stopped solely to eliminate waste. There are other areas you can focus on.
To prep your own kit, you will need the following items:
A reusable water bottle filled with either water or juice, or one of each!!
Snacks in your own containers. I recommend trail mix, fruit or anything that is sweet and salty to help maintain your blood pressure.
An All Terrain bandaid for your finger prick that is biodegradable (or an alternative plan for how to stop the bleeding).
A reusable arm wrap or plan to reuse the last colored one you got while donating.
An ice pack. This is only really necessarily if it is your first time donating or you get dizzy each time you donate. The blood bank will provide you with an ice pack if needed, but it will be an instant pack that is only good for a few minutes and then thrown away.
All of these items will help you avoid the waste created from snacks and bandages, and you personally should walk away without having to throw a single item in the trash!
If you are planning on donating, here are a few additional things to remember:
Drink plenty of water beforehand
Eat a meal beforehand
Get plenty of rest before and after.
Don't plan any strenuous activities for the rest of the day.
Bring along a friend!
And don't forget your zero waste kit! :)
Be a hero and go donate blood!