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Commit 4 Compassion challenge to help save lives

Community asked to take pledge to donate four times in 2024 or host blood drives

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of South Texas Blood & Tissue and DreamWeek San Antonio 2024 (DWSA2024), South Texas Blood & Tissue and DreamVoice, LLC; presenter of DreamWeek San Antonio are partnering to raise awareness about the critical need for blood donations. DreamWeek’s mission is to celebrate our humanity by creating an environment for community curated civil and civic engagements and to embrace ideas and dreams for the common good.

The theme for DreamWeek San Antonio 2024 is “The Compassion Drive”. As part of DreamWeek 2024, which is scheduled for January 12 – 28, Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Shokare Nakpodia, Founder & CEO of DreamVoice, LLC, will issue the Commit 4 Compassion challenge.

“The challenge encourages the San Antonio community to demonstrate compassion by committing to donate blood or host a blood drive during DreamWeek and up to four times throughout the year,” said Mayor Nirenberg. “By donating blood and hosting blood drives, individuals and organizations can contribute to the well-being of the community and help save lives.”

South Texas faces increasing demand for blood as it is one of the fastest-growing regions in the country. Meeting the needs of our growing patient population requires an increase in the number of blood donors in our community, as well as an increased commitment to more frequent blood donations.

“Blood donation is one of the simplest ways an individual can support the community in which they live in,” said Shokare Nakpodia. “We are excited to partner with South Texas Blood & Tissue to raise awareness about the importance of blood donations and encourage the San Antonio community to come together in compassion.”

For more information about the Commit 4 Compassion challenge and upcoming events, please visit

Major Gifts Updates – October 2023

Thank you. In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives and in the work we perform here at the Foundation, it is possible that as a board member you do not hear “thank you” enough. So, we offer our sincere appreciation for the countless hours volunteered, the countless connections facilitated to the area’s philanthropic community and for your gifts made from compassion for a mission essential to thousands of lives across Texas and beyond. Thank you.

So far, 2023 has been an interesting year for major gifts.  We have increased the number of major gift requests for 2023 by almost 30% compared to 2022, and at this time are on track to perform as we did in 2022, as it relates to gifts awarded by number and value. That means we worked harder for the same return. That makes sense if you recall that charitable donations are on the decline across the nation. I believe in continuous process improvement and with some creativity and a whole lot of sincerity, we shall move forward in the years to come. 

Today, we have reason to celebrate the successes won, in many cases, by your involvement in donor outreach and gift stewardship. Due to many of your efforts, we have secured several large gifts this year. One of special note comes from H-E-B in support of our mobile fleet needs. We also wish to celebrate gifts from the Joan & Herb Kelleher Charitable Foundation and Amy Shelton McNutt Charitable Trust supporting donor recruitment and retention; Lynch Foundation, Jeanie Rabke Wyatt Family Foundation, and Community Labs supporting enhanced outreach to the travelers on IH 10 via our new electronic billboard to be erected in 2024; and Energy Transfer for their first-time support of our mission via Daimond Sponsor of our 2023 Red & White Ball. Gotta give it to the band Rare Earth, as I cannot shake the music of their seminal hit – “I Just Want to Celebrate”.

Let’s take our joy and share it with our supporters and potential supporters. If you know anyone associated with any of the organizations identified above, please contact them and express your gratitude for joining you in raising awareness and resources for our lifesaving mission.  Thank you!

STB&T, DreamWeek issue Commit 4 Compassion Challenge

Asking donors to give four times a year

With population growth and hospital expansion, demand for blood in South Texas never ends. But if members of the community would commit to donating blood four times annually, shortages would be a thing of the past.

That’s why South Texas Blood & Tissue is teaming up with DreamWeek San Antonio 2024, encouraging businesses and community leaders to take part in the Commit 4 Compassion Challenge: a pledge to host blood drives or donate blood four times a year.

DreamWeek is a yearly citywide summit supporting civic and civil change. The theme of the 2024 DreamWeek is The Compassion Drive, coinciding with STB&T’s 50th anniversary. DreamWeek events take place in January, which also is National Blood Donor Month.

“What better way to celebrate the love for your city, than to say, ‘I will give blood?’

There is something extraordinary of knowing you are giving of yourself, and that’s what DreamWeek should be about.”

Shokare Nakpodia, founder of DreamWeek San Antonio

Throughout Jan. 12-28, there will be more than 200 DreamWeek engagements throughout the city – ways to share ideas, incite discussions or donate blood.

Supporters from the community at Tuesday’s introduction event included civic & business leaders from across the community.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg, a regular blood donor, offered his support of the Commit 4 Compassion initiative. He fondly recalled the last time he visited STB&T, when 5-year-old Amy Morkovsky rang the bell to announce she was cancer-free.

“We want everybody in the community who believes in themselves and believes in their power and believes in their neighbors’ worth and value to come in and schedule a blood drive, make a donation at your employer, or if you’re an employer make a blood drive happen. Commit to doing it because there are more Amys out there.”

San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg

Big Hearts, Big City Gala a big success

Saturday, Oct. 21st will go in the books as one of the most successful nights on record for The Blood & Tissue Center Foundation, demonstrating the spirit of compassion and collaboration truly alive in our community. Six hundred seventy guests, donors, and volunteers raised more than $731,000 with proceeds going to support South Texas Blood & Tissue, including the replacement of much-needed blood services vehicles.

The ambiance of our richly decorated ballroom, with San Antonio’s iconic silhouetted landmarks, set the stage for guests to enjoy a festive evening complete with signature cocktails, a fashion photoshoot, a wine pull, a raffle, the always exciting Heads or Tails game, and a live auction.

Our city’s very own Ernie Zuniga served as master of ceremonies. For Ernie, the importance of donating blood is personal. As he guided the audience through a heartfelt program, he also shared his mother’s battle with cancer and her need for blood transfusion during treatment.

Ernie joined auctioneer, Rick Shaw, in a spirited live auction and fund-the-need program, wrapping up the evening. Guests then moved to the dance floor for spirited fun courtesy of live music by E7.

A special thank you to Red & White Ball co-chairs, Kristen and Jonathan Boerger and Erin and Jeremy Schulz, our Diamond Sponsor, Energy Transfer, all our sponsors and underwriters, and our participating guests who helped make the event a success.

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