The David Foster Foundation partners with two-time heart transplant recipient and former professional athlete Simon Keith to promote Heart Month this February and emphasis the need for more registered organ donors
February 7, 2023 (Toronto, ON) – Did you know that approximately every 40 seconds someone will have a heart attack? This is one of the alarming statistics that highlights Heart Month this February, where attention is focused on the importance of cardiovascular health. To help Canadians be more ‘Heart Smart’ and encourage the need for more registered organ donors, the David Foster Foundation is partnering with famed Canadian, former professional soccer player and two-time heart transplant recipient Simon Keith C.M. of The Simon Keith Foundation.
As of today, there are over 4,400 Canadians awaiting a life-saving organ transplant. This need is underscored by the fact that 90% of Canadians say they support organ donation, however only 32% have actually registered their decision. What is more surprising is that this rate is one of the lowest for a developed country such as Canada.
Simon Keith’s personal struggles and perseverance makes him the perfect spokesperson to help promote Heart Month and the need for more registered organ donors. Simon is the first athlete in the world to play a professional sport after receiving his first heart transplant. Due to an illness and the need for a second heart transplant, Simon was inspired to share his humanitarian efforts globally and has become one of the most well-known leaders on the topics of organ donation, patient advocacy and transplantation.
In 2012, Keith founded The Simon Keith Foundation, (www.thesimonkeithfoundation.com) dedicated to providing financial support to youths who have undergone a life-saving organ transplant who desire a return to an active and healthy lifestyle while also striving to increase organ donor registration. Most recently, Simon received the Order of Canada, recognized as one of Canada’s highest honors for individuals who shape Canadian society, ignite imaginations and unite communities.
“We are taking this opportunity to not only draw awareness to the fact that heart disease is the second leading cause of death in Canada but also the continuing need for heart and organ transplants,” says HCol Michael Ravenhill, Chief Executive Officer at The David Foster Foundation. “Partnering with Simon Keith was the perfect partnership to help inform, educate, and create a better awareness about the importance of becoming an organ donor.”
“This is an important cause that is near and dear to my heart – no pun intended,” added Simon Keith C.M. “This month is the perfect to get people thinking not only of their own health but of what they do to help future transplant patients in need.”
The David Foster Foundation is a national non-profit Canadian charitable organization that was founded by famed music producer David Foster over 37 years ago, who started it after a request from his mother. The Foundation is dedicated to providing financial support for all non-medical expenses to Canadian families with children in need of pediatric organ transplants.
There are multiple ways for people to support the David Foster Foundation: 1) visiting us at www.davidfosterfoundation.com to see the options available to help us, and 2) registering to become an organ donor and be sure to share your wishes with your family – it takes only two minutes to register.
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About The Simon Keith Foundation
The Simon Keith Foundation is dedicated to providing financial support primarily to youths who have undergone a life-saving organ transplant who desire a return to an active and healthy lifestyle. In addition to helping people with their non-medical expenses, the Foundation strives to increase organ donor registration through public awareness campaigns. For additional information please go to www.thesimonkeithfoundation.com.
About The David Foster Foundation
The David Foster Foundation provides financial assistance to families of children for all non-medical expenses while their child is going through the major organ transplant process. Thanks to its annual fundraising efforts and the generous support of Life Legacy Members, national partners, and donors, families receive financial support for day-to-day expenses such as mortgage/rent, car payments, travel expenses, utilities, groceries and more while their child is going through the major organ transplant process.
The success of the David Foster Foundation would not be possible without the generous support of Life Legacy Members including Jim & Sandi Treliving, AWIN Group of Dealerships, GAIN Group, Jim Pattison, TELUS, Paragon, The Slaight Family Foundation, The Suzanne and Walter Scott Foundation, Walter & Maria Schneider, Joan & Paul Waechter, Kyle MacDonald & John Franklin, and the Newton Glassman Charitable Foundation in Partnership with the Catalyst Capital Group. The Foundation is also supported by National Partners WestJet, Aird & Berlis LLP, National Post, ALLVISION, and Schnitzer Steel, and Community Partners Boston Pizza, Oak Bay Beach Hotel, Tom Lee Music, Gib-San Pools, DeerFields Clinic, StayWell, RBC Dominion Securities, and The Hillyard Stephen Group. For those who wish to have a deeper involvement with the organization, there are a number of ways to contribute including the donation of Avion Rewards and Aeroplan miles, all of which will directly help families going through the organ transplant process.
The Foundation also promotes organ donor awareness and registration in both Canada and the United States. For more information, visit www.davidfosterfoundation.com.