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Martha Garcia began donating blood her junior year of high school at Hemet High, when one of her old friends, Cassi Tichy, an 18-year-old illustrator and artist, was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma. Their high school held multiple blood drives in support of Cassi, which Martha and many other students took part in. Now, in her first year of college at SDSU, she continues to donate for patients like Cassi in need of blood transfusions.
As a freshman, Martha is studying psychology. She hopes to eventually work with industrial organizations and employers to help create better environments in workplaces — something she’s very passionate about.
For as long as she can remember, Martha has always been people-oriented. Back home, she loved doing community service work, including working with homeless shelters and helping the elderly. Though she’s still getting adjusted to life in San Diego, she hopes to get involved in community projects here as well.
Donating blood is something she can do to help others in a real, tangible and easy way. While she has had a personal experience with it because of someone she knows who is in need, she believes that everyone can put themselves in those shoes in order to give blood, too.
“It’s important to think about other people, if you’re healthy enough,” she said. “Think about other people like Cassi’s family, and other families, and the difference you can make. Those families are eternally grateful.”
Patients like Cassi and her family members, and friends like Martha, are the reason the San Diego Blood Bank are here: to lend a helping hand in our community.