Football tragic, Mr Paschalidis, has saved lives with his relentless campaign to prevent and treat on-field cardiac arrest.
As the founder and CEO of the Heartbeat of Football Foundation, Mr Paschalidis offers simple screening checks for players, advocates for defibrillators for all sports fields and provides first aid education.
This year, FIFA teamed up with Heartbeat of Football to actively promote heart health to fans attending the in the FIFA Women’s World Cup Australia & New Zealand 2023 – through the implementation of a booth at one of the tournament’s biggest FIFA Fan Festivals.
Mr Paschalidis is one of three Local Hero finalists nominated and voted for by the community. The winner will receive a $20,000 grant for the organisation they represent, with the remaining finalists to receive a $5,000 grant for their organisation.
The Greek Herald asked Mr Paschalidis how it feels to be recognised as a finalist for the Westfield Hurstville Local Hero for 2023.
“This is validation for what Heartbeat of Football has been doing in the community since we launched in 2016,” Mr Paschalidis tells The Greek Herald.
“I have very strong ties to the Hurstville area through football as a player and coach with three local clubs.”
Mr Paschalidis explains how he met his wife, Jane, for the first time in 1986 about 100 metres away from Westfield Hurstville, making the recognition additionally special.
If Andy is successful in the community vote, the Heartbeat of Football Foundation will use its funds to run eight Heart Health Awareness and Testing Days and four CPR and defibrillator (AED) confidence sessions.
“Naturally any grant I can secure will be spent in providing our unique free heart health checks for the local Community,” he explains.
Westfield Hurstville is celebrating the Local Heroes finalists exhibition, open now until September 11 on Level 2, behind Concierge. The public are welcome to join and can also cast a vote for the 2023 nominees.