Every year approximately forty thousand babies are born with Congenital Heart Defects, otherwise known as CHD, and nearly twenty-five percent of those children will require open heart surgery.
Mended Little Hearts Julia Montoya says, “A lot of times if a baby is not diagnosed before birth there is no warning so once the baby is born there is no warning. It is an immediate trip to Dallas without the ability to plan and pack.”
That sudden unplanned trip to Dallas can add additional stress to parents during a time when they really just need to focus on their child.
This is where Mended Little Heart’s Bravery Bags come in.
Heart Mom Kirstie Lagunas says, “The bravery bag and it had like toiletries and it had like shampoo and conditioner because we didn’t know before he was born that he had a heart defect.”
Julia Montoya says, “They are given to any child who is in the hospital for heart surgery. We usually provide the bag itself. The little lion, this is Stitch, he’s our mascot. And then literature for the families. The bag itself, the literature, a pen, and a bracelet all come from our national office. The local chapters only have to supply shipping for these items.”
To help get these supplies to families in need Mended Little Hearts is hosting “Roar n’ Run” a virtual race that will be held from February 7th to the 14th, National CHD Awareness Week.
Participants can join in on a 5k or 10k, 13.1 miles or 26.2 miles.
Julia Montoya says, “It may be done by walking, running, jogging, swimming, biking whatever their preference is.”
You can connect with Mended Little Hearts on their Facebook page.