Viridiane’s Hope for Children’s Health and Education (VHCHE, Corp.) is an organization established to provide health and educational opportunities for children in underserved and underprivileged communities at both local and global levels. VHCHE, Corp. was inspired by the life of a little girl born in Cameroon who lived a short, but full and impactful life. It memorializes the legacy of this amazing child who touched so many lives.
It is the mission, duty and purpose of VHCHE, Corp. to build sustainable partnerships for children to enable and empower them to face and address challenges encountered in their communities. VHCHE, Corp. also aims to advance children’s rights and to correct inequality in underserved and underprivileged communities by coordinating and facilitating outreach and education activities. Its central mission is to provide aid and relief to eradicate illiteracy and promote healthy behavior in children at local, national, and global levels.
In memory of Viridiane, VHCHE, Corp.’s first project will involve building a school in Cameroon and will be used as a model for other projects in the United States and around the world.
Viridiane was born on June 19, 1999 in Yaoundé, Cameroon. She immigrated to the United States when she was only 10 months old and subsequently became a naturalized U.S. citizen.
Viridiane was joyful, caring, compassionate, always smiling, and was the child everyone wanted to spend time with. She was also ready to spread her contagious smile and her joyful spirit onto everyone she encountered in her life, whether at her church, school, or neighborhood. She spent most of her life in Austin, TX where she attended school and participated in various activities including singing with the church children’s choir and volunteering with her family in various charitable events. Viridiane was also a well-rounded athlete participating in various sports with her school and the YMCA, including running, soccer, basketball, and swimming. Viridiane was in overall very good health and had a goal to become a medical doctor later in life and to help others in need.
On February 17, 2007, like every Saturday during the basketball season, Viridiane was playing in an indoor game at the YMCA in northwest Austin, TX. She was playing what every parent spectator commented to be her best game since the beginning of the season. She was also lined up to play the entire game. One minute into the fourth quarter of the game, she desperately walked out of the court towards her father who was there with her at the game. She looked pale, exhausted, and could not say a word. The first thought was that she was dehydrated. She immediately was picked up and carried towards the water fountain that was just at a couple of feet from the court. Upon arrival to the fountain, she collapsed in her father’s arm. No breathing! No pulse! No heartbeat. She was immediately rushed toward the lobby of the YMCA and a YMCA staff was asked to call 911 while her father was performing CPR. After a series of chest compressions and mouth to mouth breathing, Viridiane was able to get a couple of breaths but the pulse was still not quite there. An Automated External Defibrillator (AED) was requested from the YMCA staff and the EMS arrived, then took it from there. Resuscitation was attempted with the AED and Viridiane responded with a sign of heart fibrillation. She was then transported to Brackenridge hospital unconscious and connected to an external source of oxygen.
Despite every attempt to bring Viridiane back to life, she passed away on Monday, February 19, 2007 at 3:25 AM. Autopsy results determined that Viridiane had been born with an undetected congenital anomaly of the coronary arteries. Over four hundred people participated in Viridiane’s funeral in Austin, TX.
To memorialize Viridiane’s passion, goal, motivation, and impacts on others, the Viridiane’s Hope for Children’s Health and Education was incorporated in the State of Virginia on May 4, 2018, and was authorized by the Internal Revenue Service to operate as a 501(c)(3) tax exempt nonprofit organization, recognized as VHCHE Corp.