To kick off my Charity project, the first chosen charity that will be featured is Heart Research UK.
I was kindly invited to the launch of a new partnership between Heart Research UK and Hilton Garden Inn Hotel in Brindley Place, Birmingham, where I got meet the charities Regional Manger for the Midlands, John Lloyd.
I will do a further post on this new partnership later in the month, but first I wanted to take the opportunity of introducing the charity and the work it does.
Heart Research UK has been around for 48 years and was started by Mr David Watson MBE, who was a Heart Surgeon at the time. Mr Watson become frustrated with the lack of research into the area of heart disease in particular with regards to surgical techniques.
The charity provides funding for pioneering medical research and also encourages local communities to look after their hearts by living healthier lifestyles.
Heart Research UK has funded many pioneering research projects, including funding six of the first eight successful heart transplants here in the UK, and ploughed £10.6 million into research over the last 10 years into Hospitals and Universities to help develop new treatments and procedures.
All this research goes towards saving people’s lives or helping them to cope with a range of heart conditions and diseases.
One recent development in the Charities ongoing crusade is the focus on children. After realising there were very limited resources for children suffering with heart conditions, they carried out research through the University of Exeter into what children needed in terms of rehabilitation once they have had surgery and leave hospital or if they are living with a life-long condition.
They have also recently carried out research into the usage of baby monitors for babies with heart conditions leaving Birmingham Children’s Hospital, which enables those who are caring for babies to have some sort of peace of mind once out of the hospital environment and the security blanket it can provide.
As a result of their research many healthcare professionals have benefited from unique courses from experts in order to train them to be the best in their field.
Another big part of the work Heart Research UK carry out is prevention. According to the Heart Research UK website ‘Heart disease is still Britain’s biggest killer with nearly 80,000 deaths a year’
Prevention is all about making people aware of how their lifestyle can affect their heart health. Community-based ‘Healthy Heart’ projects have been funded to the sum of £1.2m in the last 10 years which has helped community groups run innovative activities to raise awareness, encourage and inspire people to lead healthy lifestyles to benefit their heart through eating healthier, being more active and the effect of smoking on heart health.
During March, I will be providing ‘Healthy Heart’ tips, to enable you to live ‘healthier, happier and longer lives’. I will also be looking at ways you get involved with the Charity, should you wish to.
One final important point to note about the charity is that they are a local national charity and everything that is raised in your local area goes towards helping hearts in the local community.
If you would like to learn more about Heart Research UK and the work they do then go to their website heartresearch.org.uk , where all the above information and more can be found.