A while back we introduced you to Rhode Island advocate Miriam Plitt. Miriam has been an American Heart Association volunteer for more than a decade and she has spent countless hours at the State House promoting our lifesaving policy agenda. We want to congratulate Miriam, Mayor Donald Grebien and Pawtucket city leaders on their recent accomplishment of being designated as a HeartSafe Community by the RI Department of Health. Miriam was excited to work with Mayor Grebien and city leaders on this important project - and after 2+ years they achieved their objective! The goals of the RI HeartSafe Community Program are to:
- Increase the number of community members trained in CPR;
- Increase the number of first responders equipped with automated external defibrillators (AEDs); and
- Ensure appropriate pre-arrival instructions and optimize the prehospital care system.
Pawtucket is the 12th community to earn the HeartSafe designation. Is your community on the list? Learn more at http://www.health.ri.gov/heartdiseaseandstroke/about/heartsafecommunities/
Below please find Miriam's story where she shares her personal connection to heart disease:
Advocacy is a key component of the American Heart Association and it all starts at the grassroots level with You and Me. Heart disease and stroke have affected friends and family members over the years….when one of my grandsons was born with a heart condition, my focus became youth and children.
As an advocacy ambassador for the AHA, I turned to my local community and joined the Pawtucket School District Wellness Committee so I could work on policies related to healthy eating, nutrition, physical education and tobacco control.
When I look at my grandson and his future, it’s about advocating for policy change, education and prevention that will help him lead a healthy life. It’s about legislation that will create a healthier environment for him and all children. It’s about raising funds for research so that new medical advances can help my grandson and others.
My passion is to continue advocating and working toward reducing heart disease and stroke, creating healthy communities, and seeing my grandson and other children have the opportunity to lead productive, enjoyable and fulfilling lives.