VANCOUVER, March 21, 2023 — It’s not every day that students get to help break a state record, three years in a row! That’s exactly what students at Felida Elementary School in Vancouver did this last week as they wrapped up Kids Heart Challenge, raising more than $42,500 for the American Heart Association.

“We have so many families that want to be a part of this. Our community is just caring and generous,” said Devin Cast, a Felida PE teacher.  “I can’t believe how much they really want to help out.”

The families and community truly rallied around the school and its students this year, not only in fundraising but also by participating in the heart-healthy Kids Heart Challenge curriculum. Cast said many of his students reported learning Hand-Only CPR with their families.

“The kids at Felida Elementary School made a real difference in the fight against heart disease,” said Emily Anderly, American Heart Association Senior Director. “They raised a record amount of money among participating schools in Washington that will fund life-saving research. Also 87 families took the opportunity to learn Hands-Only CPR as a part of their student’s involvement in the program.”

Kids Heart Challenge allows students to improve their own health by doing things like cardio-based activities, making pledges to stay active, and doing good deeds in the community.

For nearly 45 years, the American Heart Association has been partnering with educators in elementary, middle and high schools across the nation to help educate students about healthy living. This was Felida’s 36th year participating in the challenge.

“When I started working with Kids Heart Challenge 19 years ago, we only raised a few thousand dollars.” Cast said. “It’s amazing see how far we’ve come. These kids that I’m working with really get into Kids Heart Challenge.”

"In addition to the life-saving funds they’ve helped raise, the students are learning and making changes that will impact them for a lifetime," said Anderly.

The Kids Heart Challenge and American Heart Challenge school programs provide unique age-appropriate curriculum and activities. Students and educators have the tools needed to support both mental and physical well-being in students, families and staff, all while making a difference by raising funds to save lives.


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century. Connect with us on heart.orgFacebookTwitter or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.   

For Media Inquiries: 

Jay Wintermeyer: 503-820-5309;