Voices Against Brain Cancer (VABC) Comments on Taylor Swift’s Efforts to Raise Money for Cancer Charities

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Following the debut of Taylor Swift’s song meant to help raise money for cancer charities, VABC releases a statement supporting the humanitarian effort

On October 1, 2012, nonprofit organization Voices Against Brain Cancer (VABC) released a statement in regards to Taylor Swift’s song devoted to raising money for cancer charities inspired by the tragic death of Ronan Thompson from brain cancer.

According to The New York Times, “In 2010, a few months after his third birthday, Ronan [Thompson] was given a diagnosis of neuroblastoma, an often deadly childhood cancer. He died on May 9, 2011, three days before he was to turn 4.” During Ronan’s battle with cancer, his mother, Maya Thompson, created a blog called “Rockstar Ronan” to update family and friends on her son’s progress. Mrs. Thompson stated, “I had a feeling this blog was going to get dark and ugly and scary… I wasn’t willing to sugarcoat any of this.”

Ms. Swift learned of Ronan’s story from his mother’s blog. In November of 2011, Ms. Swift contacted Mrs. Thompson. “She told me how she had been reading our blog for over a year, and her parents had been reading it and they were all devastated and touched by it…I remember crying and she was crying,” recalled Mrs. Thompson.

The article reports that Ms. Swift was so affected by Thompson’s blog that she wrote a song, sharing writing credit with her. “Ronan” was released by Ms. Swift earlier this month with 100% of her royalties going to cancer charities. “Ms. Thompson’s share will go to the Ronan Thompson Foundation. She plans to use the money to help establish a neuroblastoma research and treatment center,” states the article.

VABC Representative, Clay Darrohn, says, “VABC feels that Ms. Swift’s song is not only a beautiful eulogy, but it will go a long way help raise awareness for childhood cancer and money for important cancer research and treatment.”

VABC has a wide variety of initiatives in place for brain cancer research, awareness and support. The grants fund cutting-edge research programs that will have a monumental impact on the diagnosis and treatment of brain cancer. VABC currently funds research at several esteemed institutions such as Brookhaven National Laboratory, Cleveland Clinic, Columbia, Cornell, Duke, Harvard, John Hopkins, Memorial Sloan-Kettering and Yale, to name a few. VABC's mission is to find a cure for brain cancer by advancing scientific research, increasing awareness within the medical community and supporting patients, their families and caregivers afflicted with this devastating disease.

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