The Heart Truth - Champions Program
The Heart Truth - Champions Program

Philadelphia Champions pose together, seated and standing.

The Heart Truth® Champions Program, funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women's Health, provides a day of training for individuals—including an overview of heart disease by a local cardiologist and/or nurse; personal stories of women with heart disease; an overview of The Heart Truth and Champions Program; and an overview of The Heart Truth's education materials for the public and health professionals. Additionally, the training provides an interactive community audit and action plan development session. To date, The Heart Truth has trained 678 Champions who have conducted more than 790 community events, which have reached more than 633,000 people.

The Heart Truth Champions represent faith-based, civic, women's, and/or health organizations. They may be community leaders, health educators, wellness directors, nurses, or other individuals who work at the local level and talk directly to people about their health. Most importantly, The Heart Truth Champions offer access to an extensive community network, especially populations of women that bear a disproportionate burden from heart disease. Champions are selected based on their current position and involvement in health education and community outreach in their local area. Training program photographs are available for viewing.

Over the past year, The Heart Truth Champions have taken a leading role in creating opportunities to participate in local community activities to raise awareness of women and heart disease.

A Year in Review: Champions Programming 2015

The Champions trained in 2015 completed their 6-month commitment to the Heart Truth Champions program. These Champions included community health advocates from: Baltimore, MD, and Denver, CO.

The 2015 Champions planned and implemented a total of 42 events, reaching 1,799 people. These events included health fairs, community gatherings, educational workshops, heart disease risk factor screenings, presentations on heart health at the Consulate of Mexico, and events coordinated with faith based institutions.

Champion Highlights

In Baltimore, Kathleen C. Parker worked with the Saint Marks Institutional Baptist Church and the Saint Agnes Hospital to join a community fair and raise awareness about heart disease in women and The Heart Truth program. Parker offered a presentation on heart disease and distributed materials to fair attendess. Free blood pressure screening and breast mammograms were offered as part of the community fair, as well as other information related to heart health.

Two Champions in Denver, Ofelia Mares and Helem Orozco worked in collaboration to join a vaccination event at Lady of Peace Church and offer information about heart disease in women. The Champions shared The Heart Truth materials and talked to attendees about the importance of knowing one’s risk for heart disease. Mares and Orozco shared that some attendees were surprised with the consequences of heart disease. 

Table with Heart Truth materials               July 1, 2015 presentation about heart disease at the Saint Anthony Church

The Heart Truth Champions from Denver, Blanca Flores and Magda Ortiz offered a presentation about heart disease at the Saint Anthony Church on July 1st 2015.

Champion Feedback

"There are limited resources for communities. Thank you for bringing support to advocates at the local level."

"Many thanks to all who are involved in this program and for allowing me to participate. A very special thanks to the NHLBI for sponsoring the program. I worked hard to make my activities a success. This has been a very good program and I hope it continues so that we can reach more people."

"Thank you for providing me with great information to share with my community. I pass it on frequently."

"Thank you for having me. My philosophy is 'once a champion always a champion'."

"I thoroughly enjoyed promoting awareness of women's risk for heart disease all year long. I would love to continue spreading the word. I am now planning my 2nd Annual Red Dress/Red Tie Event for next February! Thank you so much for this opportunity!"

Last Updated: March 2016

The Heart Truth®, its logo, The Red Dress®, and Red Dress® are registered trademarks of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  National Wear Red Day® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and American Heart Association.