North Central Women's Lacrosse Fights Pediatric Cancer

Sept. 27, 2010 - Part of being a student-athlete at North Central College involves one's willingness to serve. Coach Jenni Kapanen and the women's soccer and lacrosse teams have answered their call to serve - from a six year-old named Rosie.

At the age of three, Rosie Colucci was diagnosed with brain cancer and neurofibromatosis, a serious disorder which initiates tumor growth anywhere in or on the nerves of the body. The six year-old has been very brave throughout her numerous surgeries and chemotherapy sessions. She will need to continue regular chemotherapy until 2012. Rosie had the idea to begin a fundraiser to help kids like her with brain tumors. She would like to raise $40,000 in hopes of finding a cure.

The North Central women's soccer and lacrosse teams are aiming to help Rosie by "adopting" her as part of their team. This adoption process began through the Friends of Jaclyn Foundation (FOJ). FOJ was inspired by Jaclyn Murphy, a 15-year old who was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor in 2004 at the age of nine.

The foundation matches up high school or collegiate sport teams with children that are diagnosed with pediatric brain cancer. The child then becomes involved with the assigned team through various media like text messages, phone calls, facebook, e-mails, and twitter. According to FOJ, the press coverage of the teams involved has created more awareness about pediatric brain tumors. With the combined power of awareness and coverage, these teams can really contribute to finding a cure.

North Central now joins the list of FOJ teams among other notable teams like UCLA softball and Northwestern lacrosse. Through this experience, the North Central women's soccer and lacrosse teams will be able to inspire and help Rosie and her family both on and off the field.

For more information on Rosie Colucci or ways to donate, visit

To learn how your team can become involved with children facing pediatric brain tumors and FOJ visit


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