February is Heart and Stroke Month and the Durham and Peterborough Region Heart & Stroke Foundation (DPRHSF) is set to proclaim the message to residents of the signs an attack to residents, with a rally for the hundreds of volunteer canvassers at Maxwell Heights Secondary School. “Heart disease and stroke are the number one killers of women globally, and takes a life every seven minutes in Canada.” says Susan Edwards, Area Coordinator for DPRHSF. “Getting the warning signs out there is important.” Edwards, is a heart attack survivor who is due to endure the seventh surgery shortly. The signs differ from male and female but may include chest pain, sweating, shortness of breath, light-headedness, nausea and flu-like symptoms. This year Olympic Medallist, Joannie Rochette has been named Honourary Chair of the Canvass Campaign. Two days before the figure skater was due to compete at the Vancouver Olympics her mother, Thérèse, died from a heart attack at the age of 55. Therese even noted her symptoms in papers found in her purse after her death. Now Rochette, who is studying to be a doctor, wants to help educate people recognize the warning signs and what to do. Heart & Stroke Canvass funds research to achieve more medical breakthroughs. Volunteers also help family members, friends and neighbours by sharing life-saving health information, either in person or online. This year, Heart & Stroke volunteer canvassers will distribute information to help people recognize the signs of a heart attack, including how women may experience signs differently. Canvassers will be knocking on doors or speaking at workplaces to educate and also appeal for donations during the month of February. Volunteer opportunities include canvassers, area captains and zone leaders. To learn how you can volunteer, visit heartandstroke.ca/help or call the local office 905-666-3777.