One of every 100 children born in the developing world will never see his or her first birthday because of congenital heart disease. Many children in developing nations who have congenital heart disease are never diagnosed, and never undergo lifesaving surgery. The HeartGift Foundation brings children from around the world to the US for free surgery to correct life-threatening heart defects. They come for surgery because their home countries lack adequate health care.
Children are referred to HeartGift through many international agencies. Once accepted into our program the child and parent/guardian are flown to one of our chapter cities to receive life-saving heart surgery at no cost to the family. The HeartGift medical teams all donate their time and expertise. The child/caregiver are housed and cared for my a host family, often of the same ethnicity. The surgery mends the child's heart and gives them hope for a healthy future.
Over 150 children have received lifesaving heart surgery to correct their congenital heart defect. With mended hearts these children are able to attend school for the first time. Their caregivers are free to work or educate themselves to help support the family. The families community is positively impacted as they realize that strangers from another land bonded together with the common goal of saving that child's life. Goodwill is spread from one country to another.