Heart Foundation Big Heart Appeal will go virtual as New Zealand is at ‘Red’

The Heart Foundation has cancelled its Big Heart Appeal street collection (scheduled for Friday 25 February and Saturday 26 February 2022) due to Omicron cases in the community and the need to prioritise the safety of all New Zealanders.  

“We were overwhelmed by the number of big-hearted Kiwis who volunteered their time to be street collectors and help raise funds for life-saving heart research, and we’re incredibly disappointed to cancel. But we know this is the right thing to do for our volunteers and the wider community,” says Heart Foundation Medical Director Dr Gerry Devlin.

In 2021, Covid-19 also disrupted the Big Heart Appeal forcing the national street collection to be cancelled. The Heart Foundation is aware that another year without the visibility of volunteers in the community to raise awareness and to generate much needed life-saving funds could adversely impact its work.

“The Big Heart Appeal is our largest public fundraising activity of the year, generating vital funds for heart research and without the street collection we need people more than ever to support us.”

Every 90 minutes, a New Zealander dies of heart disease and the charity’s vital work includes funding research to save lives and improve the quality of life for the 170,000 New Zealanders living with heart disease.

The Heart Foundation calls on New Zealanders for support, to get behind the Big Heart Appeal and donate online at heartfoundation.org.nz/donate.

"We have a long and proud record of investment in research and training which has improved the heart health outcomes for New Zealanders, but we still have much more work to do with heart disease remaining the leading cause of death and ill health in our communities."

Dr Devlin says heart disease or a heart event can happen to anyone at any time of their lives.

“Funds raised will ensure we can continue to fund vital heart research and support training for the next generation of heart health professionals and researchers, including investigating potential transformational treatments for those living with heart disease,” he says.