SIMONS FUND

Rating: 4.88 stars   8 reviews

Issues: Health

Location: PO Box 61 Lafayette Hill PA 19444 USA

Mission: To save the life of a child . . . and then another, by raising awareness about the conditions that lead to sudden cardiac arrest and death.
Results: We have provided free heart screenings to almost 5,000 students; 43 have discovered potentially-fatal heart conditions. We also got the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act passed. It is the first of its kind legislation that prevents sudden cardiac arrest among student athletes. We work with the best medical institutions to check hearts and save lives.
Target demographics: All school-aged students
Direct beneficiaries per year: 2,000 students will get their hearts checked.
Geographic areas served: Greater Philadelphia area
Programs: heart screenings

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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

I have been involved in Simon's Fund for over 3 years and have watched this organization grow into a powerful force that is making a direct impact on saving children's lives. The commitment from the founders, Darren and Phyllis Sudman is to put every dollar into free heart screenings, research and educating the public on the signs and symptoms of sudden cardiac arrest. As parents who lost their child because of an undiagnosed heart condition, they have chosen to dedicate their lives to "checking hearts and saving lives" and are an inspiration to all of us who serve on the board and our incredible team of volunteers.

The organization works tirelessly to pass legislation called the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act and to date has been successful in two states (PA and IL) with more to come. At almost every screening, a child is flagged for further testing because of a possible heart condition. To be involved with an organization that is so dynamic and committed to preventing children from dying from such a preventable condition makes me proud to be a board member and continues to drive my engagement.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

My work with Simon's Fund is one of the most meaningful aspects of my life. As one of the board members responsible for the strategic direction of our Programming activities, I help ensure that our donations are put to great use screening children, advocating for state legislation and researching sudden cardiac arrest in children. Founded by my friends, Darren and Phyllis Sudman, in the wake of tragedy, our non-profit has grown into a nationally-recognized cause for good!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Extend our reach across the entire country!

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

We started this organization eight years ago following the sudden death of our son. We just wanted to make sure that no other family and community had to endure the senseless and preventable death of a child. We have not achieved that goal. However, our accomplishments have exceeded our expectations. We have screened the hearts of over 6,000 students; helping 50 plus discover heart conditions. We have worked with lawmakers to pass the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act in two states. The law is pending in five others. We are working to establish the first Youth Heart Screening Registry. We are launching a new site called Screen Across America.

I have no doubt, that we will reach our goal - to make checking the hearts of children a standard of care.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Increase the number of employees. There are so many tasks to complete.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of board members?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

Was this review helpful? 
Rating: 5 stars  

Simon's fund is the most incredible organization and has been saving lives for many years. The founders, Phyllis and Darren Sudman have devoted their lives to making sure that other families never have to face the same type of tragedy that they faced when their precious little boy, Simon shockingly passed away at three months of age in 2005. Over the years, they have held heart screenings at countless school districts and have already saved many lives. They will continue to save lives and I feel honored to be part of this incredible cause!!!!

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 4 stars  

I learned about Simon's Fund several years ago and was immediately drawn to their story. Since I have been helping the organization generate publicity. I have attended many of their screenings and watched families have the opportunity to learn whether their child was at serious risk for Sudden Cardiac Arrest, and if so, be directed to the proper medical professionals to keep their child safe. In addition, I was honored to be part of the organization's lobbying effort to make PA the first state to pass legislation to protect student athletes. Since, they have worked tirelessly to spread the legislation to other states, and are succeeding in doing so. This organization combines passionate dedication to a cause with an ability to navigate the system and get things done expediently -- that is unusual in a small non profit.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Add additional professional staff so that efforts are less reliant on volunteers, and do additional board training and perhaps board outreach to ensure that the organization is maximizing the power and abilities of its board.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization beyond what is required of advisors?

Likely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

A lot

Will you tell others about this organization?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am Simon's grandmother. He died while taking an evening nap lying next to his mother. He didn't cry out, he didn't jerk or move, he just never woke up. Thanks to some dedicated medical people we found out that Simon suffered from an irregular heart beat called Long QT Syndrome. The mission of Simon's Fund (simonsfund.org) is to save a child’s life . . . and then another, by raising awareness of conditions that lead to sudden cardiac arrest and death. In a short five years my children have screened over 3500 children in the greater Philadelphia area; they have saved the lives of 35 young people, about one in every hundred. Simon's Fund has played a major role in getting legislation passed in PA to make sure athletes who suffer from dizziness or fainting (number one sign of a possible heart condition) get medical treatment. Italy screens the hearts of all their children; their mortality rate dropped by 89%. Simon's Fund wants all children to have their hearts screened so that no other family has to go through what my children went through.

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

My three month old grandson, Simon, died; months later his parents started Simon's Fund so that no other family would feel the pain of loosing a precious child. For the last five years Phyllis and Darren have found the strength to coordinate heart screenings to save other lives; to date 20 children have benefited from their determination and dedication to changing the course of children with unknown heart defects. Each time another child dies on a field, court, swimming pool deck, Phyllis and Darren feel the pain of the parents and yet become more determined to organize another screening, another fund raiser,another way to involve the meidcal community in their crusade. They fight the sadness of a lost child daily, yet with the support of many they are able to continue living knowing they are helping another family.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

speaking with the children who have undergone open heart surgery which saved their lives after a screening at a Simon's Fund screening.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Absolutely nothing

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Review from Guidestar
Rating: 5 stars  

Simons Fund is run by amazing people who are committed to the mission in every way. I was a part of volunteering for an event run by Simons fund. We held a screening in Norristown. A urban city in the heart (no pun intended) of Montgomery County. We were able to screen over 300 young people after a student from our high school passed away. The community came together to support Simons fund by showing up to get screened.
This is an organization that operates with integrity. This is an organization that does not just show up to do an event. Simons fund became part of our community and engaged with families to ensure trust.
I heard so many comments from parents of appreciation.
I am grateful for this organization and it's mission to save the lives of young people.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've personally experienced the results of this organization by watching the hard work of all associated with Simons fund. People recieved screenings and lives were saved by the test.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would not change a thing. I personally want to work harder to support this organization to enable them to continue the work they do to save lives.

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