AN “inspirational” Capital researcher has been named as a ‘Heart Hero’ at a star-studded awards ceremony in London.
PhD student Hannah Costello – who studies at the British Heart Foundation Centre for Cardiovascular Science at the University of Edinburgh – was praised for her dedication to the charity after revealing she found time alongside her research to raise awareness and funds to support their work.
As well as research into heart and circulatory diseases as part of her PhD, Hannah regularly organises events for BHF Scotland to raise the importance of heart health in her own time.
Also working as a STEM ambassador, Hannah has taken the lead on the BHF Scotland School Outreach Programme, taking research and heart health into the classroom in a number of schools in Edinburgh and the Lothians.
She now hopes to set up further groups in schools in Dundee, St Andrews and Aberdeen.
Sky News presenter Kay Burley announced the winners at the BHF Heart Heroes Awards in London on Friday.
Hannah said she was delighted to win the award, describing it as an “honour” to even be nominated.
She said: “Starting the BHF Scotland School Outreach Programme this year to educate children about heart health and empower them to make positive life choices has been very rewarding.
“To even be nominated as a BHF Heart Hero was an honour and I can’t quite believe I won. I can’t thank BHF Scotland enough for their support.”
Fourteen awards were given to people across the UK, who have shown remarkable bravery or have gone above and beyond to help others. Other winners included dedicated healthcare professionals, children battling life-threatening conditions, heart surgery survivors, people who have displayed awe-inspiring courage by administering CPR and those who have raised huge amounts of money for the BHF’s life saving research.
Simon Gillespie, BHF chief executive, said: “Our Heart Hero Award winners and nominees come from different walks of life and from every part of the UK.
“They range from incredible children to remarkable pensioners. But they all share a spirit that embodies all that is best about the UK.
“Without our supporters, we cannot fund research that brings new hope to the seven million people living with conditions such as stroke, coronary heart disease, vascular dementia and diabetes.”
He added: “I’m in no doubt that their dedication and selflessness will mean that more lives will be saved from heart and circulatory disease, so thank you and congratulations to everyone who was nominated for an award.”