Heart Healthy: Students Catch Air, Rock the Beat!

Students, staff members and parents across the Chula Vista Elementary School District jumped, danced, and hopped their way to better fitness while raising funds for the American Heart Association.

The Board of Education designated February 1 as “National Wear Red Day” in CVESD, in recognition of the heart association’s “Go Red For Women” campaign. The event was observed across the District, including at the Education Service and Support Center where employees donned red T-shirts stating ‘Rock the Beat.’ You know, your heart beat. It set the tone for a month of heart-healthy activities in the District.

Cardiovascular disease is the number one cause of death for women, killing more women per year than the next four causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer. Students did their part to make a difference through Jump Rope for Heart events. At Silver Wing Elementary, for example, students not only jumped rope, they danced their way to better health and fitness Zumba-style.

“Jump Rope For Heart is a volunteer driven, activity based event in which we are able to collectively teach children the importance of eating healthy and being active while giving them the opportunity to give back to the American Heart community through the community service,” said Jennie Brane, the association’s Youth Market Director.

Through early March, 32 schools had completed Jump Rope for Heart events and 11 more schools scheduled events over the next few months. To date, Chula Vista Schools have raised nearly $25,000 for the American Heart Association, an amount that is on track to match or exceed the $62,000 raised by District schools last year.

“I am incredibly impressed and thankful for the outstanding volunteers within the schools at Chula Vista and from the District office,” Brane said. “The passion, commitment and dedication of each and every volunteer I work with amazes and inspires me. Through outstanding volunteers like these, we are able to make a huge impact in the health of our children and in the world of heart disease.”

Parent volunteers such as Karen Rostodha-Bonner helped feature students and school supporters during several live-shots on KUSI’s morning news show at Sunnyside Elementary. A DJ from Channel 933 (iHeart Radio, coincidentally enough) helped students keep the beat. 

Funds raised by Jump Rope for Heart help support AHA research and education initiatives that save lives in the community.

“The volunteers in Chula Vista are my heart heroes,” Brane said.

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