Community Papers

Walk for hearts

The Campbell River Branch of the First Open Heart Society is inviting everyone to attend their annual Walk for Hearts on May 4.

Registration is at 1:30 p.m., the walk begins at 2 p.m. from the Willow Point Hall and goes along the Sea Walk, then returns to the hall.

It is a fun family affair with refreshments provided and prizes for adults and children which are won by a draw following the walk. All children go home with a prize. The participants either provide a donation or gather pledges from others to raise funds for this event which benefits cardiac patients from the whole North Island and the Campbell River Hospital. Tax receipts are provided.

A small group of people initiated the Campbell River Branch of the First Open Heart Society 28 years ago. They meet every fourth Wednesday of the month at the Community Centre. They are a Vancouver Island cardiac support group with branches in Victoria, Cowichan Valley, Nanaimo, Port Alberni, Courtenay and Campbell River. Victoria (the head office) owns and operates Heart House which is a Bed & Breakfast within walking distance of the Royal Jubilee Hospital for the use and comfort of patients and their families of the North Island. This branch has furnished the Campbell River Room.

Since 1990, the Campbell River Branch of the First Open Heart Society has donated $283,084.02 for cardiac equipment for the Campbell River Hospital which includes funds for nurses’ and technicians’ education in cardiac courses. Their primary function is not to raise money for hospital equipment but to provide support for local heart patients (anyone with a cardiovascular problem) and their families, who are facing or recovering from heart surgery or experiencing any other heart or cardio-vascular related problem or procedure. This may be moral support and/or financial support for people in need to obtain medical treatment in Vancouver or Victoria. Special emphasis is given to families with children facing surgery for heart related problems at Children’s Hospital in Vancouver.

They are not affiliated in any way with the Heart and Stroke Foundation. This group is a local support group. They have one fundraiser per year. The funds stay local and are used for North Island heart patients, cardiac equipment for the Campbell River Hospital, cardiac education for nurses and technicians and occasionally for Heart House which is used by North Island patients and their families.

If you would like to make a difference in an organization which benefits heart families and their community, feel free to join them. For questions and times of the next meeting phone Ken at 923-3466 or Ed at 287-3096.

This year’s Walk for Hearts is dedicated to Bert Derks, a wonderful, kind man who was a member of the local heart society for many years. Derks passed away last year and is very much missed.

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