2016 Cheer Your Heart Out

February is American Heart Month and Wilson Health has an important message it would like to spread throughout the community. The hospital is committed to keeping the community heart healthy and has teamed up with 11 local high school cheerleading squads to help raise awareness of heart disease and stroke for the second annual Cheer Your Heart Out.

“After the success of last year’s Cheer Your Heart Out, we are excited to once again work with our area schools in raising awareness of heart disease and stroke by educating our youth population on the importance of leading a heart healthy lifestyle,” said Margo O’Leary, director of Marketing and Communications, Wilson Health.

Cheer Your Heart Out is a social media campaign hosted on Wilson Health’s Facebook page. Area high schools are invited to participate by creating a cheer specific to heart health. The participating schools are given guidelines to follow that incorporate key heart healthy information.

Last year, Wilson Health experienced a total reach on Facebook of over 100,000. “The interaction we had with our partnering schools and the entire community was amazing,” said O’Leary. “We are hoping to exceed last year’s engagement numbers, but most importantly we want to increase awareness of heart disease and educate our youth on the importance of leading a healthy lifestyle. We feel if we can make an impact on our students and make this a fun, competitive, learning experience we’ve achieved our goal for the campaign.”

In order to participate, area high school cheerleading squads must develop a cheer that incorporates a message on heart health. “We provide resources for the students,” said Brian Scheid, director of Heart and Vascular Services, Wilson Health. “Wilson Health follows the American Heart Association Life’s Simple 7 guide, which provides seven simple steps you can follow in order to live a long, healthy, productive life. As the students develop their cheers, we want them to remember and act upon the messages that they are delivering within their community.”

Cheer squads were asked to perform and videotape their cheer during a varsity basketball game. The videos are uploaded to the Wilson Health Facebook page.   

Starting February 1, the public can visit Wilson Health’s Facebook page, www.facebook.com/wilsonhospital and “like” their favorite heart healthy school cheer. Voting ends February 10 at noon. The cheer team with the most votes will be awarded a $1,000 Ernst Sporting Goods gift card for their school. Second place will receive a $750 Ernst gift card. Third place receives a $500 Ernst gift card. All other participants will receive a $100 gift card.

“The entire student body and the community as a whole loves getting involved and supporting Cheer Your Heart Out,” said Woody Goffinett, manager of Sports Medicine, Wilson Health. “Heart health education can be fun and what better voice to use than our youth.”

For more information, visit www.wilsonhealth.org or www.facebook.com/wilsonhospital.