DALLAS, Texas, August 14, 2023 — The American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, has introduced a new collection of characters that will serve as this year’s Heart Heroes for the Kids Heart Challenge™ campaign. These eight heroes encourage students to get active and learn more about how to impact their health as well as that of their families and communities.  Each hero represents a positive trait that aligns with the school-based initiative aimed at improving students’ health while raising life-saving donations for the American Heart Association.

This year’s Heart Heroes are:

  • Buster, who loves to cheer on and celebrate others. Buster is the one throwing a party to celebrate all the kids and grown-ups who are pitching in to raise funds to help kids with special hearts as part of Kids Heart Challenge™.
  • Skip, who knows that when it comes to vaping and tobacco, the best choice is to just SKIP it!
  • Bolt, who knows being active is a real boost to mood, muscle strength and brain power.
  • Beat, who encourages everyone to learn Hands-Only CPR because calling 9-1-1 and performing CPR could save a life.
  • Star, who knows a good night’s sleep not only helps you feel good, it also keeps your heart and brain healthy over time.
  • Splash, who loves creating fun and healthy things to eat and drink to support a strong and healthy heart.
  • Tru, who began a Kids Heart Challenge™ Kindness Club that looks for acts of service they can do to help others.
  • Spark, who loves science, technology, engineering and math.

These heroes will be intertwined into the Kids Heart Challenge™ campaign that engages more than 1,774 elementary schools and 111,806 students in Texas. Through the challenge, students learn healthy habits including staying active, drinking water, getting plenty of sleep, being kind to themselves, reducing screen time, and saying no to vaping and tobacco and educate their families as well.  

The Kids Heart Challenge™ is rooted in evidence-based science that shows that kids who are regularly active have a better chance of a healthy adulthood.[1] In addition to improved physical health, the benefits of physical activity for children include better grades, school attendance and classroom behavior. Physical activity can also help kids feel better, improve mental health, build self-esteem, and decrease and prevent conditions such as anxiety and depression. [2]

To get your school involved with the Kids Heart Challenge™, visit www.heart.org/getstarted.


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.org, Facebook, Twitter, TikTok or by calling 1-800-AHA-USA1.

For Media Inquiries: 214-706-1176

Megan Jameson: 512-639-4366; megan.jameson@heart.org  

For Public Inquiries: 1-800-AHA-USA1 (242-8721)

heart.org and stroke.org

[1] Department of Health and Human Services, 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines, page 14. Available for download here: https://health.gov/paguidelines/default.aspx

[2] Department of Health and Human Services, 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines, page 14. Available for download here: https://health.gov/paguidelines/default.aspx