The current global public health emergencies have highlighted the urgency and importance of HeartFirstAid Africa's mission and goals, necessitating a greater need for health education, health promotion, and disease prevention measures in health-deprived communities.
With full commitment to our mission, we have dedicated both our time and resources to ensure the success of our health projects without seeking outside donations or contributions. As we look to the future and expansion of our services, we invite you to join us on our mission to improve public health conditions in the African communities we serve. It is our belief that a collective commitment to the well-being of these communities will ensure a lasting change. We would be honored to have your support toward our health campaigns and mission.
1. #KnowYourNumbers 2. #HeartWomenHeartFamilies.
Any donations made are tax-deductible as HeartFirstAid Africa is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
The purpose of our health and wellness fairs is to provide women and girls of the communities we serve with ongoing access to resources and information on how to sustain and enhance their well-being. Education is a key component of these fairs, as it is essential for empowering individuals to make informed decisions about their health. Through our fairs, women and girls acquire the knowledge and skills needed to improve their own health as well as the health of their families.
Being a man or a woman has a significant impact on health, as a result of both biological and gender-related differences. The health of women and girls is of particular concern because, in many societies, they are disadvantaged by discrimination rooted in sociocultural factors. For example, women and girls face increased vulnerability to HIV/AIDS.
Some of the sociocultural factors that prevent women and girls to benefit from quality health services and attaining the best possible level of health include:
While poverty is an important barrier to positive health outcomes for both men and women, poverty tends to yield a higher burden on women and girls’ health due to, for example, feeding practices (malnutrition) and use of unsafe cooking fuels (COPD).
Women and girls in disadvantaged communities are disproportionately affected by health disparities and unfortunately receive inadequate education about the risks of common and prevalent diseases. They should fully understand the threats they face from alarming health concerns such as breast and cervical cancer. In addition, all women and girls should have access to credible health information about diseases, effective preventable measures to protect them, and quality health and wellness care. They should be able to choose the best course of treatment for their health and have access to competent medical professionals. #HeartWomenHeartFamilies
Major life transitions such as pregnancy, motherhood and menopause can create physical and emotional stresses for women. Negative life experiences – infertility and perinatal loss, poverty, discrimination, violence, unemployment and isolation – also impact on women's mental health and wellbeing. Unequal economic and social conditions also contribute to women's higher risk of depression.
A: Stroke affects women differently than men in several ways.
• More women than men die from stroke, and more women have strokes later in life. It is twice as common for women between 20 and 39 to have a stroke than men of the same age. Also, more women than men have another stroke within 5 years of the first stroke.
A: Stroke symptoms come on suddenly. The most
common symptoms are:
• Numbness or weakness of face, arm, or leg, especially on only one side of the body.
• Trouble seeing in one or both eyes
• Trouble walking, dizziness, or loss of balance or coordination
• Severe headache with no known cause
F—Face: Look in the mirror and smile, or ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop?
A—Arms: Raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?
S—Speech: Repeat a simple phrase, like “Hello, myname is ____.” Is the speech slurred or strange?
T—Time: Act fast. If you see any of these signs, callthe ambulance right away. Some treatments for stroke work only if given in the first 3 hours (or up to 4½ hours for some people) after symptoms appear.
A: Certain habits and health problems raise your risk of stroke. You can control many of the risk factors
• Habits you can control include not smoking, eating healthy, getting physical activity, limiting alcohol, and
• Health problems you can improve include
high blood pressure—the leading risk factor for stroke—high cholesterol, overweight and obesity, and diabetes.
• Risk factors you can’t control include your age, family history, race and ethnicity, and menopause.
Knowing about your risk factors, including those you can’t control, can help you and your doctor or nurse
decide on a plan to lower your risk of stroke.
A: “Heart disease” refers to several types of problems that affect the heart. The most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease (CAD), also called coronary heart disease. In CAD, plaque builds up on the walls of the arteries that carry blood to the heart. Over time, this buildup
causes the arteries to narrow and harden, a process called atherosclerosis. This prevents the heart from getting all the blood it needs. It can also cause a blood clot to develop. If the clot blocks blood flow to the heart it can cause a heart attack.
A: Heart disease often has no symptoms you can feel, like pain or shortness of breath. Two out of every 3 women who die suddenly from heart disease did not have symptoms.
But there are some signs to watch for. Chest or arm pain or discomfort can be a symptom of heart disease or a warning sign of a heart attack. Women often describe a burning chest pain or pain in the back, neck or jaw.
Call the ambulance if you think you are having a heart attack, rather than driving yourself to the hospital.
If you think you may have heart disease, talk to your doctor.
He or she will do tests and ask about your family medical history and health behaviors like smoking, physical activity, and healthy eating..
A: Certain habits and health problems raise your risk for heart disease. You can control many of the risk factors for
• Habits you can control include not smoking, eating healthy, getting physical activity, limiting alcohol, and reducing stress. Talk to your doctor and nurse about steps you can take to quit smoking, eat healthier, and lower your stress.
• Health problems you can improve include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, overweight and obesity, and diabetes. If you have one or more of these health problems, work with your doctor or nurse to make healthy changes to lower your risk. Your doctor may also prescribe medicine to help you control your blood pressure or cholesterol.
• Risk factors you can’t control include your age, family history, and menopause. Knowing about risk
factors you can’t control can help you and your doctor decide on a plan to reduce other risk factors for heart disease.
You should choose these foods most of the time:
• Fruits and vegetables. At least half of your plate should be fruits and vegetables.
• Whole grains. At least half of your grains should be whole grains, such as whole wheat, oatmeal,
and brown rice.
• Fat-free or low-fat dairy products. These include milk, calcium-fortifed soy drinks are not dairy.
cheese, yogurt, and other milk products.
• Seafood, skinless poultry, lean meats, beans, eggs, and unsalted nuts.
• Oils. Sources of healthier oils and fats include avocados, olives, and canola and olive oils
You should limit:
• Saturated fats. These fats are found in foods such as pizza, ice cream, fried chicken, bacon,
hamburgers, many cakes and cookies. Check the Nutrition Facts label for saturated fat. Less than 10% of your daily calories should be from saturated fats.
• Trans fats. These fats are found mainly in commercially prepared baked goods, snack foods,
and margarine. Check the Nutrition Facts label and choose foods with no trans fats as often as possible.
• Sodium. Sodium is found in salt, but most of the sodium we eat is not from salt that we add while cooking or at the table. Most of our sodium comes from processed foods like breads and rolls, cold cuts, pizza, hot dogs, cheese, pasta dishes, and condiments (like ketchup and
mustard). Limit your daily sodium to less than 2,300 milligrams (equal to a teaspoon), unless
your doctor or nurse says something else. Check
the Nutrition Facts label for sodium. Foods with 20% or more of the “Daily Value” of sodium are high in sodium.
• Added sugars. Foods like fruit and dairy products naturally contain sugar. But you should limit
foods that contain added sugars. These foods include sodas, sports drinks, cakes, candy, and
ice cream. Check the Nutrition Facts label for added sugars and limit how much food with added sugars you eat.
A: The Nutrition Facts label on most packaged foods has information about how many calories and how
much saturated fat, trans fat, cholesterol, sodium, and added sugars are in each serving.
Women in rural communities are the primary caregivers for their immediate and extended families. Within these roles, there are many social constraints that place a heavy burden on women’s emotional well-being, as well as several obligations that can impact their physical health. Furthermore, in today’s economic reality these women are still expected to make a financial contribution to their household expenses; however, these women often have no formal education and limited employability. Unfortunately, with all of these expectations, women’s health takes a backseat as they place the health and well-being of their family ahead of their own. To prevent the deterioration of these women’s physical health and that of their families, women in rural communities should have access to crucial health and wellness care. By providing them with necessary resources, we can help combat issues that disproportionately impact these vulnerable populations and improve the overall quality of life.
Women face diverse and unique health concerns across the lifespan which may affect their overall health and wellness.
Learn how some of these conditions and life challenges impact the lives of women and girls each year.
Overall, many women and girls in rural communities do not have access to crucial medical care and lack the information to make educated decisions about their health. As a result, the women are unaware of the risks associated with certain everyday behaviors that might make them prone to prevalent diseases. Women are our mothers, our sisters, and our friends, and they deserve better. We are committed to ensuring that women and girls in the rural communities that we serve have the information they need to make educated decisions about their health and get the care they require through the implementation of strategic health campaigns and other initiatives. #HeartWomenHeartFamilies.