In recognition of the American Heart Association’s (AHA) Heart Month in February, the College of Community Health Sciences held multiple fundraisers to benefit the association. As of February 17, 2014, the College had raised a total of $6,729, and money from the fundraisers is still being collected.
The various fundraisers included raffles for homemade items and store-donated items, various food sales, t-shirt sales and spirit nights held at local restaurants.
The College worked in coordination with other colleges and organizations within The University of Alabama for a total of $13,596 raised for the AHA.
The fundraising activities concluded with the West Alabama Heart Walk, held at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater on February 15, 2014. The annual race is the American Heart Association’s premiere event that brings communities together to raise funds and celebrate progress in the fight against heart diseases and stroke, two of the nation’s top killers.
The race in Tuscaloosa had around 750 participants and raised $130,000 for the association.
Amelia de los Reyes, a nursing manager and telemedicine coordinator at the College who has been actively involved in this fundraiser for nearly 25 years, says, “This has evolved to such a huge event in Tuscaloosa. Because of this event, we’re able to come up with money to educate the public – through television, going to schools, going to faith-based ministries, going out into the community and handing out articles regarding prevention.”
According to the AHA, 473 of the 1,602 deaths recorded in Tuscaloosa County in 2009 were due to cardiovascular disease and/or stroke.
Patricia Parnell, senior accountant for the Student Health Center, which is part of the College of Community Health Sciences, and team captain for the College’s fundraising activities, says, “I am so proud of everyone who participated. They all showed such enthusiasm for the cause.”