February is HeartKids National Awareness Month

February is HeartKids National Awareness Month. The Bradannii team would like to recognize the important work that they do. It’s a heartbreaking fact that there are 64,000 Australian children, teen and adults who are affected by congenital heart disease. HeartKids aims to help them and their families to live the most fulfilling life possible by supporting them to reach their personal goals. Naturally, this is a shared goal. Therefore, helping raise awareness of HeartKids is something we’d like to support them with. Their work is founded upon providing advocacy for people suffering with congenital heart disease and their families; providing information to the general public; researching the causes, treatment, and management of congenital heart disease to drive a brighter future; and supporting and partnering with hospitals, non-government organisations and people and their families facing uncertain futures because of congenital heart disease.

Advocacy

In their role as advocates, HeartKids supports the needs of people with congenital heart disease, their families and their carers.

HeartKids’s advocacy pillar is founded on the guiding principles of utilizing corrective action to address health inequities.

They do this by working with:

  • Government Departments
  • Partnerships (CHAAnZ, Cardiac Society)
  • Hospitals and primary health care providers, and
  • Schools and community groups

Their end goal is to ensure that congenital heart disease is a government priority and as a critical health issue by the broader community. This will enable people who suffer with it now and in the future have a brighter tomorrow.

Information

It is an important component of HeartKids work to provide high quality information to guide families on the “whole life” journey of people suffering from congenital heart failure.

Their information pillar is built upon a guiding principle to inform. It is important that they inform all members of the general public who come into contact with their organisation as well as those who suffer from congenital heart disease as well as their family and support systems.

The way that HeartKids informs people is through:

  • Their website
  • A 1-800 helpline (1800 432 785)
  • Telehealth support team
  • Education days, and
  • Educational podcasts and videos that are available online

Through this support they hope to create awareness that services are accessible and available to all Australians.

Research

Being in a position to drive world class research into the causes, treatment, and management of congenital heart disease is an important focus for HeartKids. They have committed over $3 million to research efforts so far with plans of donating significantly more.

The guiding principle behind HeartKids research practices is that all research must be evidence-based.

Heartkids aims for its research outputs to be:

  • Develop policies
  • Support health and research committees
  • Enable a Grants-in Aid Program
  • Have an ANZ CHD (Australia-New Zealand Cognitive Heart Disease) Registry Program

By doing this HeartKids will support priority-driven research to improve the quality of life of those impacted by cognitive heart disease. The focus of these programs has been to:

  • Reduce the mortality and/or morbidity of congenital heart disease
  • Reduce the incidence of CGH
  • Develop preventative measures of CGH in the future
  • To understand the causes and disease processes
  • To improve early detection, treatments, and management of CGH, and to:
  • Gain a greater understanding of the consequences of congenital heart disease and its treatment including the neurological, cognitive or social impacts on those affected and how these issues can be addressed and improved in the future.

Support

The fourth pillar of HeartKids’ efforts is to deliver high quality support services through all major Australian children’s hospitals and throughout the broader community. HeartKids firmly believes that no family should suffer through this disease alone and they do their absolute best to ensure that every family is supported.

HeartKids guiding principles of support are:

  • Their support is person and family centred
  • The focus is placed firmly on wellness

HeartKids outputs of support include:

  • Morning teas
  • Grief and loss support
  • Playgroups
  • Peer-to-peer education and mentoring
  • Individualised case management
  • Referrals
  • Financial assistance

HeartKids hopes that their outputs are:

  • Accessible to all Australians
  • The improved health and well being for those who are impacted by congenital heart disease.

The HeartBreaking Facts

HeartKids provides the following two infograms.

To download a copy of the red infogram, please visit this link. Alternatively or in addition, to download the blue infogram please visit this link.

Donate to HeartKids Today!

As February is HeartKids National Awareness Month we politely ask all Australians to ‘show your heart’ to ‘help little hearts’ and support kids born with heart disease.

The charity component of HeartKids is the only charity in Australia that is focused on funding the research, information, and care that provide constant support for children, teens, and adults from diagnosis all of the way throughout their life journey with CHD.

HeartKids needs to raise a little over half-a-million dollars ($550,000). This money will go towards one on one support for parents whose child is undergoing heart surgery and or receiving treatment. This money will be able to help support over 64,000 Australians living with congenital or acquired heart disease and their family. You can donate to HeartKids online through their website.

At this current time, they are asking for one-time donations rather than monthly donations. As you are donating directly to HeartKids you can rest assured that your donation is going to directly benefit the children and families of those suffering from congenital heart disease.

For example, donations of

  • $50 provides one on one support for a family
  • $80 supports a teen’s move from child to adult care
  • $250 assists with travel for a rural family to ensure they receive required care
  • $400 provides counselling for a bereaved family.

You can also donate as little or as much as you like.

Bradannii and HeartKids thank you for your consideration.

Drop Us a Line

Don’t be shy. Let us know if you have any questions!


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