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Hearts skip a beat

The excitement was palpable in the Pakenham Campus Junior School last Wednesday as students took part in the Heart Foundation’s Jump Rope for Heart campaign.

The Junior School managed to raise a whopping $20,838 to help fight heart disease, putting them at the top of the leaderboard for the state and fifth in Australia.

The Jump Off Day included a range of fun skipping activities and a visit from the costumed character ‘Happy Heart’.

One of the keen young skippers was Prep student Ayla, who needed six hours of open-heart surgery when she was just six days old to repair her heart. Mum Taryn Bailey said the family was “truly grateful” the College was a supporter of the cause.

“We feel incredibly lucky that with such research we have our gorgeous girl here with us today,” Ms Bailey said.

Prep Henry W was the highest individual Prep fundraiser, raising $550.

The Pakenham Campus Junior School joined Jump Rope for Heart back in 2006 and since that time has raised a total of $133,585.

Physical Education teacher Renyce McConnell said older students ‘jumped’ at the chance last week to help the younger children out with skipping activities.

“I think they can remember how excited they were when they participated all those years ago,” Ms McConnell said.”

She said the campaign not only raised vital funds for the Heart Foundation, but also helped students develop new skills.

“The skipping talents the students walk away with are empowering, as students are not only exercising their own hearts but they are testing their perseverance and resilience by learning new skills,” she said.

“The Beaconhills community has a really heart-warming way of coming together to celebrate wonderful moments like these.”

Girl holds hand of costumed heart character
Group of students with skipping ropes and costumed heart character.