By Jessica Pope

jessica.pope@gaflnews.com



VALDOSTA -- Volunteers are needed to help spread the news about women's heart health and raise funds for research and education.

Next month, the American Heart Association will kick off Go Red for Women, a movement dedicated to helping raise women's awareness of cardiovascular disease and empower women to reduce their risk. Businesses are encouraged to participate by asking their employees to pay $5 to wear jeans and red to work on Feb. 4, National Wear Red Day, or another day of their choosing.

Melanie Godwin, regional director of the American Heart Association, said, "Wear Red Day is an opportunity for everyone to remember their female friends and family members who have suffered from the disease. It's also a time to think about their own hearts and take charge of their own health."

Money raised will benefit research and education to help reduce the incidence of heart disease in women.

Godwin said several local companies have already registered for this event, including Chick-fil-A, the City of Valdosta, Lowndes County, Smith Northview Hospital, and South Georgia Medical Center. However, others are needed to follow in their footsteps and join the campaign.

"Their generosity is helping to heighten awareness and bring about positive change to defeat this major health threat," she added.

According to the American Heart Association, heart disease and stroke are the No. 1 and No. 3 killers of women. They are two of the many cardiovascular diseases that kill nearly 500,000 women each year. That's more than the next seven causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer, the association states.

For information about participating in National Wear Red Day, call the American Heart Association at 247-1550.

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