HeartKids Victoria and Tasmania is a group that offers support for families of kids having heart disease, whether congenital or acquired. It began as voluntary group of individuals and parents concerned about or dealing with the daily realities of caring and bringing up kids having cardiac conditions, and occasionally dealing with the child loss due to the condition of their heart. HeartKids has grown into an organization of great strength having a presence in nearly every Australian state, including a National umbrella body “HeartKids Australia”.
Over the passage of years, HeartKids, through the assistance of friends, members and sponsors has been helping out the kid’s hospitals via way of giving money donations, equipment and grants for research in Victoria and Tasmania.
HeartKids got a number of regional representatives offering their time in arranging coffee mornings and other special activities towards supporting families having a kid with a congenital heart condition. Support is also offered through telephone. The objective in this area is ensuring that parents are just not left to struggle alone.
HeartKids turns out seasonal newsletters informing and updating members concerning information of relevance, patient progress, unique ‘heart family’ activities, current government policy, upcoming and scheduled events and more. HeartKids news is responsible for keeping the membership which is geographically diverse aware and ‘very close’.
HeartKids could help with information concerning your hospital stay, such as information on accessible accommodation, transport, parking and meals. They also could help with information on the certain hospital services availability like occupational therapists, social workers as well speech pathologists.
Most precious to the families at this critical surgery time are the HeartKids’ Family Support Co-ordinators both in Tasmania and Victoria. These regional professional and well trained co-ordinators are ‘heart mums’ understanding much more than what the majority of families are going through during the often tension packed hospital stay for their loved kids.
Besides providing support to affected families, HeartKids purposes to boost awareness in the corporate sector and general community regarding the high rates of congenital heart defects in the population plus its ongoing consequences.
The HeartKids Vision
We aspire to a life that is not affected by common Childhood Heart Diseases.
The HeartKids Mission
To boost the lives as well as the futures of all those who are impacted by Childhood Heart Disease, through the provision of information and advocacy, high quality care support and by giving hope through driving research.
Support for Families
Confusing, shattering, confronting and devastating: these are several of the powerful words used to describe the initial sentiments of parents upon receiving their child’s diagnosis of a heart condition. At HeartKids, they fully understand the feeling of sinking when you receive the news that your child or baby got an illness that is life threatening. All the HeartKids family support co-ordinators have been gone through similar circumstance and are available to assist you in coping with these lifestyle challenges and mixed emotions of having to come to terms with this devastating news.
The very idea of going into hospital could be quite daunting for grownups adults leave alone for children, although you could prepare in several ways. A good place to begin would be the Howie’s Place website, a new initiative by The Royal Children’s Hospital backed by The Honda Foundation. This useful site demystifies the entire process of visiting the hospital for medical tests and examinations and helps in dispelling a lot of the family anxiety.
HeartKids offers a morning tea twice weekly for families as their way of taking care of affected families. Most are coming from interstate or regional areas far from their families, friends and home and are need of such supportive environments.
Majority of kids having heart conditions may attend ordinary schools. Most of these children will most probably have had some form of corrective heart surgery ahead of their beginning school and, if this was fully successful, the kid may be able to fully take part in most if not all school activities. In the majority of instances, if restrictions are necessary, kids having heart conditions will typically limit their individual activity and also it may be vital for some restraint that is enforced by a grown up.
There is really no medical justification as to why the majority of kids having heart conditions may or should not advance academically at a similar pace as their peers. Nonetheless, the emotional impacts connected with having a congenital heart condition might be a very genuine challenge for several children.
Some of the kids might be too sensitive and embarrassed regarding their physical limitations or their operation scars. It becomes important to get ready or prepare the other school kids in the class. The kid concerned may want to join in an arranged class discussion and perhaps give their own account of their individual experiences.
How You Could Assist HeartKids
- Making a donation
- Workplace Giving
- Becoming a HeartKids Member
- Purchasing HeartKids merchandise