|Program Support Resource|
Congregations for Million Hearts® is a faith-based program designed to help guide congregations toward a heart-healthy lifestyle. The purpose of Congregations for Million Hearts® is to enlist the support of faith-based organizations to help raise awareness and prevent cardiovascular disease and focus on hypertension control. In joining the program, your congregation will work towards reducing the impact of two of the leading causes of death in the United States: heart disease and stroke.
Why should we join?
- Heart disease and stroke are the first and fourth leading causes of death in the United States.
- Heart disease is responsible for 1 of every 4 deaths in the country.
- It has been proven that engaging communities to work together using education and support can affect change in the number of deaths caused by heart disease and stroke.
What is the goal?
Virginia’s original goal was to recruit 100 faith-based organizations into the national Million Hearts® initiative by the end of 2015. Virginia enlisted its 100th congregation into the initiative on July 2, 2015 – nearly six months ahead of schedule! The national campaign’s overall goal is to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes by 2017.
How do we join?
Joining is easy, and the benefits of signing up could mean the difference of life and death for members of your congregation. First, you will need to select a member of your congregation as your Million Hearts® advocate. This individual will act as a resource for heart health information.
Also, congregations are being asked to do at least 2 of the 4 activities listed below:
- Establish and/or strengthen relationships with local experts and resources (community pharmacists, community health centers and community health workers).
- Disseminate messages about the importance of and action steps to hypertension control.
- Promote Heart Health Mobile (an app that helps to determine and reduce heart attack and stroke risk).
- Distribute blood pressure tracking wallet cards.
Ready to get started?
Complete the Million Hearts® Sign Up Form available on our website at: http://www.vdh.virginia.gov/omhhe/VA100congregations.htm and send it via e-mail to Augustine Doe, Health Equity Specialist at the Virginia Department of Health, Office of Minority Health and Health Equity, at Augustine.firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 804-864-7440. For more information, call 804-864-7436.