Among our most popular charities is the American Heart Association. The American Heart Association (AHA) is a non-profit organization in the United States that fosters appropriate cardiac care in an effort to reduce disability and deaths caused by cardiovascular disease and stroke. It was originally formed in New York City in 1924 as the Association for the Prevention and Relief of Heart Disease, but it is currently headquartered in Dallas, Texas. The American Heart Association is a national voluntary health agency. They are known for publishing standards on basic life support and advanced cardiac life support (ACLS), and in 2014 issued its first guidelines for preventing strokes in women. They are known also for operating a number of highly visible public service campaigns starting in the 1970s, and also operate a number of fundraising events. In 1994, the Chronicle of Philanthropy, an industry publication, released a study that showed the American Heart Association was ranked as the 5th “most popular charity/non-profit in America.”
The American Heart Association grew out of a set of smaller groups. A primary influential group was the Association for the Prevention and Relief of Heart Disease, formed in New York City in 1915, to study whether patients with heart disease could safely return to work. Several similar organizations formed or evolved in Boston, Philadelphia, and Chicago in the 1920s. Recognizing the need for a national organization to share research and promote findings, the American Heart Association was formed in 1924 by six cardiologists representing several of these precursor groups.
In 1957 the AHA issued a national report which included: (1) Diet may play an important role in the development of heart/artery disease, (2) The fat content and total calories in the diet are important factors, (3) The ratio between saturated and unsaturated fat may be the basic determinant, and (4) A wide variety of other factors beside fat, both dietary and non-dietary, may be important. By 1961, these finding had been strengthened, leading to the new 1961 AHA recommendations: (1) Maintain a correct body weight, (2) Engage in moderate exercise, e.g., walking to aid in weight reduction, (3) Reduce intake of total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol. Increase intake of polyunsaturated fat, (4) Men with a strong family history of atherosclerosis should pay particular attention to diet modification, and (5) Dietary changes should be carried out under medical supervision.
On October 28, 2009 the AHA and the Ad Council launched a hands-only CPR public service announcement and website. On November 30, 2009, the AHA announced a new cardiac arrest awareness campaign called Be the Beat. The campaign’s aim is to teach 12- to 15-year-olds fun ways to learn the basics of cardiopulmonary resuscitation and how to use an automated external defibrillator. In 2010 the AHA launched the “Go Red for Women” campaign. Historically men have been the primary subjects of heart disease and stroke research. “Go Red for Women” specifically targets women with information about risks and action they can take to protect their health. All revenues from the local and national campaigns goes to support awareness, research, education and community programs to benefit women.
If you visit the AHA website (www.heart.org), you will discover everything is all about bringing awareness to heart health and preventing heart attacks, smoking dangers, CPR techniques and advice, stroke warnings & signs and so much more. No wonder so many of our customers prefer the American Heart Association for their charity donation. It touches so many lives.