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Service: 'across world, street, veil'

PROVO, Utah — More than 10,000 women participating in the BYU Women's Conference 2000 gave service "across the world, across the street and across the veil" — accomplishing thousands of hours of work for Church, community and non-profit organizations.

As part of the conference's "Sisterhood Through Service" activity, LDS women participated April 26 in the largest women-sponsored blood drive in the nation — donating more than 1,400 units of blood to the Red Cross.

"This was an extraordinary event," said Judy Christensen, communications specialist for the Lewis and Clark Region of the Red Cross. "It surpasses remarkable."

On April 26, LDS women donated 1,217 units of blood. During the days that followed an additional 187 units of blood were donated. (Each donor gives one pint of blood plus blood samples that are sent to national testing laboratories.) And taking into account the hundreds of women who tried to donate blood, but were unable to do so because of medical conditions, cold symptoms, travels to certain countries or for other reasons, the project exceeded expectations.

"The women stood in line to donate blood," she said. "There is not a big enough superlative for what they were doing."

To make the record-breaking drive possible, Red Cross staff traveled from Idaho and Montana as well as from throughout Utah; approximately 135 to 150 blood services personnel and volunteers staffed the blood drive.

That day women also participated in dozens of other service projects — including work for the Church's Family History Department. Following are estimated numbers detailing the phenomenal amount of service provided.

For the LDS Humanitarian Center:
  • 2,500 newborn kits
  • 45,000 hygiene kits
  • 7,500 school kits
  • 2,000 quilts (tied, LDS volunteers are completing the quilts)
  • 5 semi-trailer loads of coats
  • 200,000-plus buttons for sewing kits

For Utah hospitals, police and fire departments and crisis centers for women and children:

15,000 stuffed bunnies and bears

For the Utah State Office of Education:

3,000 school bags for migrant children

For non-profit organizations such as the Utah Food Bank, the American Heart Association and Muscular Dystrophy:

90,000 information packets

For the American Cancer Society:

400 lap quilts

For Community Action Services of Utah County:

6,000 hygiene kits for homeless people

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