A heartfelt partnership

February 12th, 2020
< Back to Good to Know

February is heart health month, so we’re shining a light on the great work of the Heart & Stroke Foundation in Newfoundland and Labrador. We’re proud to support many of the life-changing initiatives led by their dedicated team here at home, like the HeartSmart Kids™ program, which launched last year in K-6 classrooms around the province.


For over 60 years, the Heart & Stroke Foundation has been dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. Their work has saved thousands of lives and improved the lives of millions of survivors and caregivers.

Through the HeartSmart Kids™ program, the Foundation helps educators teach children and their families how to lead healthy lifestyles by providing free resources for every student in grades K-6. The program is directed towards health educators including school teachers, nurses, dietitians, after-school and program facilitators.

The program has been educating students in British Columbia for over 25 years. With the support of Newfoundland and Labrador Hydro, in 2019 the program has been expanded for the first time to all schools in Newfoundland and Labrador.

HeartSmart Kids™ is one way we can work together to help give children, youth and their families the best start for a healthier life. There are three separate books with the program, focused on the following topics:

Food for Fuel: This section explores healthy eating by incorporating activities such as building a balanced plate, recipe research, traditional foods, the cost of healthy food, and reading nutrition labels.

The powerful heart and the mighty brain: Youth learn about the circulatory system, how the heart works, and how to prevent and manage heart disease and stroke – and how to recognize the symptoms in an emergency.

Count Your Cubes: Designed to increase children’s awareness of the adverse health effects of sugary drinks. Activities include learning about sugar content in sugar-sweetened beverages, caffeine in energy and sports drinks, reading labels and how to create-your-own water recipe.

Keep Moving: This section teaches children about the health benefits of daily physical activity and explores topics such as screen time, checking your pulse, walking, and brainstorming indoor and outdoor activities.

The Air We Breathe: This section is about the dangers of cigarette smoke and how children and youth can deal with different situations regarding peer pressure, the health and financial cost of tobacco, the decision-making model, experiments, and more!

Stop Marketing to Kids (Grade 4-6 books): Part of Heart & Stroke’s mission is to eliminate harmful marketing of unhealthy foods and beverages to children. This section educates students about the influence of different types of marketing and how children and youth can identify them.

As the Drum Beats: Focused on Indigenous health and holistic approaches, this section explores many different aspects including our connection to the environment and community, mental and emotional health, and reflects a general approach to Indigenous philosophy and land-based learning.

We look forward to continuing our strong partnership with the Heart & Stroke Foundation as they help empower future generations to lead heart-healthy lives!