METHUEN — Before the Methuen Exchange Club could rest on their laurels, they were put to the challenge by the Methuen Board of Trade.

The challenge? Donating blood.

Georgia Cirillo of the American Red Cross was on hand to tell the Exchange Club members they were officially challenged to pick a week or month for the members and their friends and family to donate blood.

“We need donors and we need them badly,” Cirillo explained. “We’re not severe yet, but with the winter season a lot of holiday travel accidents happen more often than not.”

Cirillo told a story of how important blood donations are.

She and her older daughter, Lisa, were driving in Quincy when they were hit head-on by a drunken driver.

“(Lisa) was driving and the steering wheel ruptured her spleen,” Cirillo explained. “I remember the front of the car was like an accordion and the EMT was asking me what blood type my daughter was. I had no idea.”

Cirillo stated her daughter had needed a blood transfusion because of the amount of blood she had lost.

“She ended up getting eight pints of blood that day,” Cirillo said. “Eight from I don’t know where, were there for her. I can’t thank them, but I’m forever greatful.”

To donate blood or to find out how your organization can sponsor a blood drive, contact Cirillo at 978-794-5625, ext. 14.

Interested parties can also call 1-800-GIVE LIFE to find a American Red Cross blood drive.