American Heart Association - You’re the Cure

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Charlotte and Rachel Richey Kentucky

On May 28, 2015, Charlotte, age 4, was diagnosed with an electrical heart condition called Catecholarminergic Polymorphic Ventricular Tachycardia (CPMVT). The diagnosis came after she had two incidents in which she lost consciousness and had to have CPR performed to save her life. After follow-up appointments and many tests, Charlotte was diagnosed with this condition that has no cure, but right now is maintaining very well with preventive measures. Charlotte is always at risk of v-tach, either from too much physical activity or from emotional stimulus that raises her heartbeat. She is on medication, but many preventive measures have been put into place, including CPR recertification for her parents, ensuring that other caregivers are CPR certified, and the purchase of an AED that stays in the home or travels with her.

Charlotte is a very lively little girl who does not meet a stranger and is full of personality. It is hard to slow her down, but it is necessary at times because of the possible risk of v-tach. She did not exhibit any symptoms prior to her first incident, which at that time was diagnosed as a concussion. Luckily, with persistence and recommended testing, we were able to find answers, even if it was difficult to process. We are very confident in her care and the precautions that we are taking, but it would offer great peace of mind if more individuals were CPR trained and could offer a quick response if a problem did present itself.

--Rachel Richey, mom to Charlotte

Meet our top active, committed and hero volunteers that recently attended our "Advocacy Volunteer Summit, 2015". It has always been important to us to recognize and show them how thankful we are for their help in the fight against heart disease and stroke, so we decided to implement a new advocate recognition program.

Our goal is to give our top advocates an opportunity to network with others from across their state, get the inside scoop on our local and federal legislative efforts, allow us to share our mission and goals with them, work with them to help tell their stories in a quick and impactful way and help them gain an understanding of their role in the legislative process.

Another benefit to being a top advocate is that they receive access to our insider perks! Some of these perks include insider calls where they will get the inside scoop on what’s happening under the dome, invites to special events and trainings held throughout the year like our advocacy summits and first consideration to attend national events like our National Lobby Day on the Hill in Washington DC.

We had a fun and informative day at this year's Advocacy Volunteer Summit!  I hope you will be able to join us next year by earning points to become a top advocate, Here’s how.

On October 23rd, advocates gathered for the Denver's Grassroots Action Team meeting and discussed how the AHA can mobilize volunteers for legislative action in the state of Colorado.

Thanks to the committed efforts of GAT Chairs Jaime Cabrera and Gerri Falco we began to mobilize the Denver community. We thanked both the Mayor and Governor for recent efforts to improve biking and walking infrastructure, participated in an advocacy training, and planned ways that the GAT could join with the State Advocacy Committee in the fight against heart disease and stroke.

The team also spoke with Senator Michael Bennet’s staff about nutrition standards for school lunches in September. The team hopes to keep the issue of healthy and active living front of mind for both the Governor of Colorado and the Mayor of Denver.

Click here to thank Mayor Hancock for his plan to expand opportunities for active living in Denver!