On Friday 21st February, Heartbeat Vietnam visited children who have received support from VinaCapital Foundation to undergo life-saving surgeries at the University Medical Center HCMC with representatives from a special group. With all members born in 1975, it is the Cat group that would try to support children with difficulties in any way they could.

Last November, the Cat Group’s members across the South gathered at VCF’s Run For The Heart – an annual charity run to raise funds for children with congenital heart defects. The Cat Group’s enthusiastic participation in the run greatly contributed to the total funds that have allowed the children to get the treatment they need.

This is the first time the Cat Group had the chance to visit the children and their parents. Thanks to Cat group’s support, those families can find happiness again and a bright future ahead. None of the children’s parents would have been able to support their children medically without the help of the Cat group and Heartbeat Vietnam. They worked as unskilled laborers, tailors, factory workers, housewives, and rice kiln workers. Wages from such humble professions do not come close to covering the costs of heart surgeries, leaving many families with no choice but to watch their loved ones suffer.

The Cat group, a group of Vietnamese people born in 1975, took part in the Run For The Heart 2019 to raise money for the children of the Heartbeat Vietnam program. Although many of the group were not in their athletic prime, they all came together to help the children in any way they could: running, walking, skipping,…anything!

Phạm Trần Khải An was waiting for his surgery scheduled for the next day. An’s condition was severe. He had cyanosis all over his body, whilst he struggled to drink milk and sleep. His mother held him in her arms all the time to comfort him, get him to sleep, and prevent him from crying. His doctor warned that the condition may get worse and even crying may be lethal. But the surgery will transform An’s life thanks to the efforts of people like those in the Cat group.

Hồ Công Vinh is turning 4 this year but had his 1st surgery when he was only 9 months old. He was shy and barely talked. His father and grandpa work for a rice kiln, while his mom is a housewife and made conical hats. They live in a shelter made of wood and tile roof. Now Vinh is looking forward to his next surgery so he can live healthily again.

They also visited Lê Vĩnh Hưng, a 17-year-old boy, who had come out of surgery only a few days before the visit and had come out from the ICU the previous day with a pacemaker to allow his heart rate to be controlled after surgery. Hung dropped out of school after 6th grade to become a fisherman and the rest of his family also worked labor-intensive jobs. This surgery will allow Hung to return home, healthier and happier, able to work again.

Every small effort helps when helping a child in need. It doesn’t matter your age, gender, experience, or knowledge. Anybody can help a child in need. Start a campaign with VCF like the Cat group did to help save children born with congenital heart defects.

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