On Sunday, September 26, 2021 the immensely successful CHD Walk for Hope exceeded its fundraising goal of $152,000 and surpassed 1 million dollars raised to date for life-saving medical research! For the 14th consecutive year, the CHD Coalition held its annual walk to increase public awareness for congenital heart defects (CHDs) and to advance CHD specific research. As a result of new medical technologies and innovative treatments derived from research, individuals with congenital heart disease are living longer and healthier lives.

The CHD Walk for Hope is much more than a fundraiser. It is a meaningful event that allows families and friends to rally in support of their CHD Warrior and to honor the Angels who have lost their battle to heart disease. The CHD Coalition was formed under the belief that even when you feel hopeless, you never give up hope. You are not alone on your journey.

This year’s event was held at the scenic Overpeck County Park in Bergen County NJ. Due to continued concerns of COVID and its potential impact on immunocompromised children with heart disease, families had the option to join virtually and watch it live on Facebook. Out of the 970 registrants, 620 participated in person. The 82 teams, whether virtual or in-person, shared a common purpose – to unite together and change the future of CHD. Every dollar we raise, every story we share, and every step we take helps.

As recounted by one of the attending CHD survivors:
“As a CHD Warrior myself, the Walk means so much to me. This event has always been and will always be my favorite day of the year! I look forward to meeting new families, talking with other Warriors, and seeing hundreds of people celebrating their special Warrior or Angel. It is amazing to see the Walk continue to grow every year.

In my opinion, the most important part of the event is the butterfly ceremony. The CHD Coalition does a beautiful job commemorating our fallen warriors. During a quiet period of remembrance, the Angel’s family releases butterflies to honor their loved one. The sheer reality is that too many children have passed away from a congenital heart defect, which is why it is so important to fundraise for research. Research offers a huge potential to save lives.

I have attended the CHD Coalition’s annual walk since I was 2 years old. They helped create a large community of families with a goal to offer each other support. Having a support system with people who understand your struggles is the key to thriving. I will forever be grateful to the CHD Coalition.”

To learn more about the CHD Coalition and its mission, visit online chdcoalition.org/what-we-do