Wednesday, November 6, 2013

T41Run beneficiary HWB's medical mission is in motion!

T41RUN Donor Update -  HWB's medical mission is in motion!

Hearts Without Boundaries of Long Beach, California (HWB) and Mending Kids International of Burbank, California (MKI) are partnering to send joint medical missions to Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, with the first mission set for December 9-14, 2013. 
PHOTO: MKI/HWB signs contract agreement with Calmette Hospital in Phnom Penh

Sunday, July 21, 2013

The Royal Embassy of Cambodia hosted HWB T41Run Finale!

The Ambassador, His Excellency, Mr. Hem Heng and Cambodian Heart Diplomat, Davik Teng present Nels with a trophy of recognition on behalf HWB and Artisans Angkor (
We did it! All of us did it! This was not a one man run. This was two nations coming together to see to it that our little brothers and sisters with congenital heart defects receive their new lease on life!
We had Sponsors who didn't just donate, but were completely involved. Our supporters in different cities across the nation helped us with fundraising events, hospital visits, and welcomed us into their homes. People opened up their wallets as we ran through their home towns... people who had just learned about our cause and wanted to offer their support.
This was a 100% volunteer effort. The Hearts Without Boundaries team worked tirelessly with us to make this a success, from logistic planning down to the artwork, this was a complete team effort!
The experience of finishing at the Royal Embassy of Cambodia was surreal. Running through the finish line next to two people who mean so much to me, my Dad and David Kem. Then to be greeted by His Excellency, Mr. Hem Heng, along with Heart Diplomat Davik Teng is something that I will remember forever.
The love of one man, Mr. Peter Chhun, and his willingness to take action is the reason for the life saving work of Hearts Without Boundaries. The willingness for one group, Mended Little Hearts of Volusia County, to share this great work is how Zolla and I learned about this wonderful mission. The work of many great individuals with a passion to help the 7 children with congenital heart defects is the reason this was a success.

Before I close this blog post, I do want to let you know that it is not too late to donate. Donations will still be accepted for the next couple weeks.

Thank you EVERYONE!

To see updates from the entire event, please "Like" the Hearts Without Boundaries facebook page!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Finale Route into DC Happening Friday, July 19th!

Direct from Hearts Without Boundaries!

We are at the home stretch and the conclusion of the journey is in sight. For those interested in running with Nels in Washington, DC, please review the map for more details, which include the route and estimated time of arrival (ETA). There has been a slight change as the new ETA at the Royal Embassy of Cambodia will be 2:00pm.

10 mile mark: Columbia Pike, ETA 11:20am
7.5 mile mark: Lincoln Memorial, ETA 12:00 noon
5 mile mark: Capitol Hill, ETA 12:40pm
2.5 mile mark: Georgia Ave/Florida Ave NW, ETA 1:20pm
Finish: Royal Embassy of Cambodia (4530 16th St NW
Washington, DC 20011), ETA 2:00pm

Runners could meet at these specific locations/times depending on how far they wish to run. If you're from around the DC area, feel free to drop by along the route to cheer Nels and his fellow runners as they make their way to the embassy.

Food and refreshments will be provided at the finale as we celebrate the success of this mission. Please help spread the word and re-share. All are welcome!

Thank you all again for your continuous support and see you at the finish line!

Heart Diplomat Bunlak Song

Our Heart Diplomat Bunlak Song has a very special story. When he was only a couple days old, he was abandoned by his mother because she didn't have the means to take care of him. He was taken in by a Cambodian family that quickly fell in love with him.
When he was 6 months old, Bunlak was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. His adopted parents were powerless to help, but thanks to Peter Chhun and Hearts Without Boundaries, Bunlak received his heart surgery and is now doing well.
This video will introduce you to Bunlak, Peter Chhun, and Davik. This shows why Peter does everything in his power to see to it that children with congenital heart defects in Cambodia are saved. We are thankful for the work of Mr. Chhun and cannot wait to see him and Davik in only a couple of days! Hearts Without Boundaries is a true blessing to the congenital heart defect community!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Heart Diplomat Soksamnang "Lucky" Vi

Soksamnang, which means Lucky in the Cambodian language, is one of our Official Heart Diplomats. Lucky was born with a VSD (or hole in his heart). Because of the great work of Hearts Without Boundaries, Lucky is doing well right now!
Click Here to see photo's of Soksamnang now!
Here is a news clip of his surgery... very fittingly it was in Las Vegas!

Many of you can just see the "run" side of T41 Run, but there are many volunteers behind this effort! One of these very hard working volunteers from Hearts Without Boundaries is David Kem. David is Soksamnang's uncle and has been devoting blood, sweat, and tears to this run since January! David will also be running with me for the last 5 miles into the Royal Embassy of Cambodia. He has even been training with a bird of his own!

Today, Washington D.C. Heart Diplomat, Gabriel Czerny completed his mile in just over 9 minutes! Remember he's trying to raise $1,000! Let me mention again, he ran 1 mile in just over 9 minutes and he was born with half a heart! Click HERE to help him reach his goal!
Here's a video of his effort:

Today we reached Richmond, VA! Getting much closer to the Royal Embassy of Cambodia. I want to thank everyone for helping us raise funds to help save 7 children's lives!
Your efforts are amazing! This week is the final push... I know we can reach $21,000! To fund one surgery through Hearts Without Boundaries is $3,000. To give a child a new lease on life... $3,000 sounds like pennies. We have two surgeries left to fund.
Thank you everyone!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Great Things Are Happening!

There are so many great things happening around the country to support the T41 Run's goal of fundraising $21,000 for Hearts Without Boundaries!

In my family's hometown of Mason City, IL, the city came together to raise $1,500 at a bake/craft/ produce sale led by Gaye Maxson. Gaye posted on her facebook wall, 
"I am happy to report that our most recent tally of donations here in Mason City for Nels Matson's T41 Run for Hearts Without Boundaries broke $1,500! According to my calculations, that is half the funding needed for one open heart surgery! Way to go, Mason City! I asked you to do what you do best, and you did!!!"

Photo from HWB facebook page
Yesterday in Long Beach, CA, Hearts Without Boundaries hosted a Welcome Dinner for Davik Teng. This comes from the Hearts Without Boundaries facebook wall: "On Saturday, July 13th, 2013, the HWB community gathered together to welcome back Davik Teng, HWB’s first heart patient. Davik is a remarkable case of courage, support, and community. With her operation taking place back in 2008, Davik has come a long way in paying it forward to all those who’ve helped her. “I would like to thank everyone who donated and gave me a new heart,” expresses Davik. She clasps her hands together and blinks back tears. “My family and I thank you all.” 

Tomorrow morning a very special kid, and Heart Diplomat Gabriel Czerny will be running 1 mile at Arundel Mills Mall. Gabriel completely came up with this idea on his own. He also told me to reset his fundraising goal to $1,000. To help him reach his goal click here!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Winston-Salem / Greensboro

On July 9th - 11th the HWB T41Run was able to give back to the local community by accompanying Valerie King of Mended Little Hearts on her weekly hospital visits.

My new friend, and Longhorn fan, Devin. 

The Giddens Family provided our lodging layered with lots of TLC!
Parker Giddens CHD warrior!
This delicious healthy plate thoughtfully prepared to give us a healthy break!

 Our Heart Diplomat, Isaac, had some pretty cool stories to tell. He said
that he will be beach running when he's on vacation this weekend.

Isaac is very animated when he talks... probably one of the best
story tellers I know!

Jeremy, signing Diplo for his heart dad, Joel.
Greta signing Diplo in the spot she picked out.

Carlee signing Diplo with her dad.

Carlee's family.

Mason's family. Mason and little Carlee (pictured above) were
hospital buddies and are currently dating.

Parker signing in his favorite color, green!

 A great way to leave North Carolina... with these two wonderful families giving donations!

Isaac, explaining to Zolla why being a Heart Diplomat is so important.