Posted by Laura Meijere Cristanelli
Healing Little Hearts
Gift of Life International is a Rotarian affiliated organization that has evolved into a global network of caring. Approximately 1.3 million children are born each year with congenital heart defects and as 93% of them do not have access to cardiac care, the goal of “Gift of Life International” is to provide life-saving cardiac treatment to children in developing countries
        much more about GOLI, photos, & video links inside.


Rotarians Healing Little Hearts Around the World
 
With approximately 1.3 million children born each year having a congenital heart defect and knowing that 93% of them do not have access to cardiac care, the goal of “Gift of Life International” (GOLI) is to provide life-saving cardiac treatment to children in developing countries regardless of gender, creed, or national origin.

Gift of Life International is a Rotarian affiliated organization that has evolved into a global network of caring. For over 44 years, Gift of Life affiliates have provided care to children with heart disease from emerging countries by bringing children to the United States for treatment, if they were not able to receive treatment in their country of birth. Gift of Life International, as a Board of Directors, was formed in 2002 to enhance the work of the existing world-wide, autonomous Gift of Life Affiliates, help form new ones, bring other NGO’s together and enhance their work in partnership, and to tell the story of GOLI. Today the strategy has evolved and now it is focused on the development of sustainable pediatric cardiac centers of excellence and the empowerment of doctors and nurses to treat children in their country or region of birth.

The 274 Rotary Clubs and 84 Rotary Gift of Life Districts continue to support Gift of Life International’s efforts around the world which now provide care to over 3,000 children each year from 80 countries. Thanks to the participation of these Clubs and Rotary Districts around the world, Rotary International’s Global Grants have become a major funding source for Gift of Life International and its affiliated program. These 84 Gift of Life Affiliates develop their own strategies on how to deliver care to children with heart disease and coordinate their efforts through Gift of Life International. In Rotary District 7230, the Gift of Life Metro New York coordinates the Gift of Life efforts of the Rotary Clubs in our District. The Chair is JT McFadden of the Elmsford Rotary Club.

Fredlee Ann Kaplan, LCSW, Vice President of Gift of Life International since 2017, has been a member of the Rotary Club of New York since 2007, and has served as a Director of the Gift of Life Affiliate in District 7230 from 2008-11, and as a Director of Gift of Life International from 2011 through 2017. “Gift of Life has been life-changing for me,” said Fredlee Ann Kaplan, “Making a difference in the lives of children and their families is more personally gratifying than I could ever have hoped”.

Fredlee has worked with particular focus on El Salvador, that is among the first countries to develop a sustainable pediatric cardiac center of excellence with the support of many Gift of Life affiliates and GOLI. It has become one of the strongest self-sustaining programs in Central America that provides care to over 200 children per year. A new, dedicated Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit has increased the capacity of the Salvadoran team to treat more children on a reliable and sustainable basis.

With healthcare professionals at Children’s Hospital Bloom in El Salvador, Fredlee has helped to develop a Humanized Care Program, a patient and family-centered care for children and their families. It was developed by teaching crisis intervention procedures and best practices in compassionate care for the patients, families and medical staff. In addition, she has implemented the first-ever Humanized Care curriculum for the Professors of Adult and Pediatric Nursing at the University of El Salvador, and is collaborating with a Gift of Life International affiliated Cardiac Surgery Program in Mexico.

“I’m very glad that the Foundation and the members of our club, Rotary Club of New York, are continuing to support Gift of Life also this year”, said the Ted Perednia, the President of RCNY, “We are delighted that this partnership with Rotary enables Gift of Life to maximize their impact in providing care to children in need”.

“Since 2002 the Rotary Club of New York Foundation has supported Gift of Life International by donating more than $180,000,” said Jim Thompson, the Chair of the Foundation, “We are truly glad about the global success of Gift of Life.”

 
Video Links
 

Overview of GOLI – Randi Jacobson

click the image to view
 
 
Message from
Lou Auticchio - President GOLI
click the image to view
 


Humanized Care - Fredlee Ann Kaplan,
Vice President GOLI
click the image to view
 

Photos


GOL 7230 Celebration of Bill Currie


Nurse training in El Salvador


The Humanized Care Team from Bloom Hospital, El Salvador


Monterrey Mexico Program




 
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