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Volunteers Needed to Knit Red Hats for Heart Month

The American Heart Association and the Children’s Heart Foundation launch the second year of Little Hats, Big Hearts in Los Angeles County. Sponsored locally by Union Bank, the program that dons newborns with knitted red caps raises awareness of heart disease, the No. 1 killer of Americans, and congenital heart defects, the most common type of birth defect in the country. All babies born at participating hospitals during the month of February will receive a hat.
“We believe that health starts from the moment a baby takes its first breath. Through our Little Hats, Big Hearts program, we are empowering moms to live heart-healthy lives and help their children do the same,” said UCLA Health cardiologist Dr. Ravi Dave, immediate past president of the American Heart Association Los Angeles County Board of Directors.
The American Heart Association is asking for volunteers to knit or crochet red baby hats to distribute to participating hospitals. To participate, go to for information, including knitting patterns and participating cities, or contact Taylor Tomczyszyn at the AHA Los Angeles office at (213) 291-7092. The association is also accepting donations to support the program, including yarn, for those who would like to contribute but do not knit or crochet.
More than 1,600 newborns in 10 L.A. County hospitals received little red hats during its launch in February 2017.
“Union Bank is proud to support this inspirational program for the second year in a row,” said Leticia Aguilar, Union Bank Regional President. “The involvement of the volunteers who take the time and care to knit each tiny hat is truly touching. We are pleased to help shine a light on the topic of congenital heart disease and encourage families to live heart healthy lives.”
“Little Hats, Big Hearts brings attention to congenital heart defects — a condition that affects about 40,000 babies born in the U.S. each year,” said William Foley, executive director of the Children’s Heart Foundation. “We’re proud to be part of this program as it brings together the community to rally around those families affected by CHD. We also would like to thank all the incredible volunteers that share their time and talent to make this program possible.”
Little Hats, Big Hearts began in Chicago in 2014. The project has grown to include 660 hospitals in 40 states, handing out more than 100,000 hats. In addition to using red hats to raise awareness of heart disease and congenital heart defects, Little Hat, Big Hearts also drives awareness for the American Heart Association’s Support Network, an online forum for families affected by heart disease and stroke.

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