Valley Catholic School
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News Release
Valley Catholic Elementary Smashes Kids Heart Challenge Record - 05/19/23

Valley Catholic Elementary School smashed records in the Pacific Northwest by raising $44,140 in the American Heart Association's Kids Heart Challenge. 

The Kids Heart Challenge allows students to improve their own health by doing cardio-based activities, making pledges to stay active, and doing good deeds in the community. The initiative has been helping educate students about healthy living for almost 45 years.

“Our families are dedicated to contributing to the amazing work that the American Heart Association does and in teaching our students to serve others in our community,” said Melissa Doxtator, VCES Principal. “This accomplishment is a testament to all of our staff for their encouragement, our families for their support, and our students for their participation.”

Physical Education teachers Eric Holstrom, Melissa Efstathiou, and Jillian Bell Nelson led the fundraising efforts. The educators even agreed to let students smash pies in their faces, an incentive for students who started fundraising before the kickoff assembly earlier this spring.

The teachers’ enthusiasm and passion for promoting heart health among their students were evident in the school’s record-breaking achievement. Emily Anderly, Senior Director at the American Heart Association, said, “The kids at Valley Catholic made a real difference in the fight against heart disease. I’m so proud of them. They raised a record amount of money among participating schools in the Pacific Northwest that will fund life-saving research. This achievement is a testament to the hard work and dedication of everyone involved in the Kids Heart Challenge at Valley Catholic Elementary School." 

Healthy living continues to be a pillar of the Valley Catholic community. Promoting heart health and physical activity in children is especially important, as these habits help prevent the development of heart disease later in life. By teaching children the importance of staying active and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, we can help create a generation of people who are less likely to experience heart disease and other health concerns.

Congratulations Valley Catholic Elementary on your smashing performance. 


Visit for more information on the Kids Heart Challenge and to see photos that can be made available to you. 

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