For National Volunteer Week, the American Heart Association would like to thank the amazing group of men, women and children that volunteer their passion and time to further our mission to fight heart disease and stroke – America’s No. 1 and No. 4 killers.

As the nation’s oldest and largest volunteer health organization, the Heart Association is dependent on the dedicated spirit of our volunteers who give their time and energy to forwarding our mission and contribute to the growth and success of our many campaigns.

Every single day, all over the country, lives are saved and improved because of the commitment, talent and passion our volunteers devote to our cause. Working together, we’ve made important strides in America’s health that have helped improve and save lives, and build healthier communities. This year, the notable accomplishments of our volunteers include:

· Raising $116 million for scientific research so that medical experts may better understand, prevent and treat heart disease and stroke.

· Launching a hypertension control initiative in over 50 U.S. cities, that focused on populations most at risk

· Doubling the number of women who understand that heart disease is their No. 1 cause of death over the last 15 years.

Here in Michigan this year, volunteers gathered at the Capitol to facilitate the declaration of February as American Heart Month during the Go Red For Women campaign – the Heart Association’s10-year old awareness and risk reduction initiative for women and heart disease. Volunteers gathered at the state Capitol with lawmakers to share their survival stories and raise awareness about how heart disease impacts our communities. On average, heart disease claims nearly 39 Michigan women’s lives a day.

Earlier this month, more than 300 American Heart Association volunteers, including heart disease and stroke survivors, researchers and healthcare professionals, all participated in a “Rally for Medical Research” on April 8, where they called on Congress to make medical research funding a national priority.

These dedicated volunteers also took part in You’re the Cure on the Hill for National Lobby Day on April 9th and urged Congress to restore federal funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and to support a Million Hearts campaign to combat the growing problem of high blood pressure – our No. 2 public enemy behind tobacco.

With the help of our volunteers, the Heart Association will continue to do even more. We know that the only way we can reach our 2020 goal – to improve cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent – is through the time, talent and energy of our inspiring volunteers.

Thank you for contributing to the organization’s many accomplishments and saving American lives over the last 98 years!

To find volunteer opportunities with the American Heart Association in your area, visit

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