The Heart Institute Foundation is once again in high gear for its annual February is Heart Month campaign, supporting the world-renowned University of Ottawa Heart Institute.
In 2023, the community rallied, raising over 1.2 million dollars during February, smashing past records thanks to incredible donors, businesses, and match sponsors.
The torch passes to new Institute leadership
This year’s Heart Month Ambassador, Dr. Rob Beanlands, will assume a new role as president and CEO of the world-class cardiac centre this spring.
Dr. Beanlands is no stranger to the Institute, as his father, Dr. Donald Beanlands, was a co-founder in 1976, alongside much-loved Dr. Wilbert Keon.
He shares, “My father taught me that an important part of good medicine is when we dare to have the courage to innovate and create new ways of delivering care. Today, with your help, we can ‘lead the charge.’ Now our vision is Heart Health for all.”
This year, donations received throughout the month will be matched by generous sponsor Fiera Capital and weekly sponsors: Mark Motors Group, Carleton Refrigeration Heating & Air Conditioning Ltd., Merkley Supply Ltd., Giovanni’s Restaurant, and Preston Hardware.
“When you give, your investment powers discoveries for life-saving future treatments,” says Foundation president Lianne Laing. She adds, “We’re so grateful for the continued support from our business and community partners.
We have incredible donors who believe in the innovative patient care, ground-breaking research, and education that the Heart Institute provides. We truly are a healthcare ‘jewel’ in our community with a global impact.
How to Get Involved
Dozens of businesses and homes are helping to #LightTheCapitalRed. Dymon Storage once again takes the lead, lighting up red for local heart health. Look way up, and you will see the Main and Main cranes awash in a red glow, in addition to many new and returning participating locations. Preston Hardware has stocked red lighting if you or your business would like to participate.
The Paper Hearts campaign
You may also see the red paper hearts on the walls near your favorite business’s checkout. Over thirty locations will be selling their hearts across the city. For a complete list, please visit: februaryisheartmonth.ca
City-wide community events
Over one hundred community initiatives will happen over the 29 days of February. New this year, a Community Winter Pentathlon features “5 events, 2 hours, and 1 heart.”
This free, family-friendly event is co-hosted by Happiness Habits 613. A fan favorite event has returned as members of the Ottawa Fire Service and Ottawa Police Services match up and hit the ice at TD Place in a friendly competition to raise money for the heart health of the community.
Many local Business Improvement Associations will boost this year’s celebrations, including the Kanata, Barrhaven, and the Manotick BIAs. The iconic Heart Swirl monument is also back again and has found a home at Lansdowne Park for the season.
Award-winning journalist and storyteller Joel Haslam, formerly of CTV News, shares incredible stories of courage and survival by Heart Institute patients.
Be sure to stay tuned for those throughout the month.
To make a charitable gift and for a complete listing of events and partners, please visit februaryisheartmonth.ca.