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  1. ITV Report

Newry Community Choir release charity single to help local girl with cancer get special treatment

Lauren, 13, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma last summer. Credit: Family photo

A community choir in Newry is using its voice to help a teenager with nueroblastoma to travel to America for a cancer treatment being trialed there.

Lauren Fitzgerald's family say the vaccine is showing promise in reducing the chances of relapse.

The 13-year-old was diagnosed with neuroblastoma - a rare form of cancer - last summer.

For the past 10 months, Lauren's been undergoing intensive chemotherapy, radiotherapy and immunotherapy.

"I've always been able to do normal things...and to be confined to one room for a full month or to not be able to leave the hospital at all, it's such a different experience," Lauren told UTV.

Neuroblastoma is an aggressive and incredibly complex cancer to treat and that's why Lauren and her family want to pay for a vaccine being trialled in New York.

The cancer has a high likelihood of returning, and if this happens the survival rate is very low, according to Solving Kids' Cancer

Neuroblastoma has a high chance of coming back again...it just gives you the piece of mind that there's less of a chance that I will get sick again and less of a chance that I'll have to go through all of this again.

– Lauren Fitzgerald

A community choir in Newry called 'Choir Studio' have released a charity single to help raise the almost £250,000 for Lauren's trip.

The choir have covered Annie Lennox and Al Green's 'Put a Little Love in Your Heart'.

"Lauren is a beautiful girl and she's so positive, she has a beautiful energy about her and we thought a sad song just wouldn't do her justice, so 'Put a little love in your heart' has a message and that's what we're asking people - but a wee bit of love in your heart," said Kathy McCaughey, a lead singer in the choir.

Lauren told UTV: "It's a really good song and such an uplifting song - it's just really humbling how kind people can be."

Currently undergoing a course of immunotherapy, Lauren's journey is far from over.

It's now hoped music will help pave the way for the next phase of her road to recovery.

  • LISTEN: Put a Little Love in Your Heart by The Choir Studio Newry

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