Happy Hearts Fund was founded by Petra Nemcova in 2005 to restore hope and opportunities to children affected by the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami; it received its 501(c)(3) status in 2006 with the vision of rebuilding schools and the lives of children after natural disasters. Happy Hearts Fund was structured so all administrative costs would be underwritten, thereby ensuring 100 percent of all donations received would be directed to children's programming.
Nemcova was in Thailand when the Indian Ocean Tsunami struck on December 26, 2004. After recovering from her injuries, she returned to Thailand to see how to be of the best help. There she witnessed families without homes, children without parents, and entire communities swept away. She was most affected by the children who were not getting any help five months after the disaster. It was the first time she experienced the gap period which occurs after first response and before governments step in after a natural disaster. For this reason Happy Hearts Fund concentrates its mission in the gap period by building "Happy Self Sustaining Schools."
Since inception, Happy Hearts Fund has worked in a total of 14 countries and is currently active in six countries including Thailand, Indonesia, Chile, Peru, Mexico, and Haiti.
Happy Hearts Fund is committed to help accomplish the UN's Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).