At a special event held on Tuesday, February 4 in Baltimore, Md., the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation presented $704,379 in grants to the Foundation for Community Partnerships, Sundance Research Institute and Saint Agnes Hospital Foundation, Inc.
In communities across the country, nonprofit organizations are working hard every day to improve cardiovascular health and combat a serious and prevalent condition with which many of us are all too familiar – heart disease. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States, and it claims approximately 600,000 lives each year.
This is one of the reasons why, in 2010, the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation launched the Connections for Cardiovascular HealthSM program, which annually awards grants of $150,000 or more to U.S.-based nonprofit organizations to support their innovative work to improve cardiovascular health. The Foundation’s program was funded through a $25 million charitable contribution made by AstraZeneca, and since its inception, has awarded more than $14 million in grants to organizations nationwide.
This year, the Connections for Cardiovascular Health program is awarding nearly $3.7 million in grants to 19 nonprofit organizations. The AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation began presenting the latest grants at a number of events in early February. Rich Buckley, AstraZeneca’s vice president of North America Corporate Affairs, who also serves as president of the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, took part in two of these events.
Rich Buckley, President of the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, shakes hands with Ellie Yorio, a 6th grade student and participant in the Foundation for Community Partnerships’ Partnering for Youth Cardio-Fit Project.
“These organizations are making a tremendous impact in their local communities by finding innovative ways to raise awareness around the risks of cardiovascular disease and providing tools and resources to help people make healthy decisions,” said Buckley. “From nutrition and exercise programs, to free health screenings and lifestyle coaching, we commend them for helping to address an urgent need to improve cardiovascular health.”
To date, more than 30,000 people have participated in a variety of community programs that have received grants through the Connections for Cardiovascular Health program. As a result of these programs, participants are making healthier food choices, exercising more and reducing or preventing cardiovascular risk factors. They are accomplishing this in many ways including reducing their body mass index, lowering their blood pressure and hemoglobin A1C levels and learning more about nutrition and cardiovascular risk factors.
For additional information, including a full list of this year’s grant recipients and a brief description of the programs being supported by the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation grants, click here.