Saving children’s lives from around the world...

One of our happy healed children with mom in Vietnam

What we are about-

Gift of Life Foundation

Rotary International District 7490


“Gift of Life” is a program begun in 1974 by the Long Island district of Rotary International.  Since then many other Rotary Districts have become involved and now some 10,000 children from more than 36 countries have received cardiovascular life saving operations in the United States.

In 1986, Our District Governor and other Rotarians, began the program in Northern N.J. and founded the “Rotary International District 7490 Gift of Life Foundation”.  Currently, over 550 children have been hosted by our District for life saving heart surgery, over 200 surgeries have been sponsored in other countries, we conducted a Cardiac Medical Mission in Vietnam in 2006, in Honduras in 2007, and have just completed another successful mission to Vietnam, in January, 2009, providing life saving heart surgery and catherization procedures to 34 children in one week.

Children who come to the United States with heart defects are usually referred by physicians or participating groups in their home country to Rotarians of Rotary District 7490 Gift of Life Foundation who forward their medical information to participating hospitals. Doctors and hospitals receive a nominal fee of $6,000 for the valuable services they render. After cases are approved for surgery by attending physicians, they are assigned to local Rotary Clubs, Interact Clubs or auxiliary organizations. They in turn provide any additional funds for medical care (prescriptions, etc.) and host the child with a parent while they are in this country. The monies needed to finance the program are raised by the Foundation, individual Rotary Clubs,  other individuals and organizations.


To contact us:

Peta Gay Smith from Jamaica with her mom, her host mom and host sister, Ray Hough and Andrew Topp—Co-chairs.