As part of the 2016 Syracuse spring scrimmage last Saturday at the Carrier Dome, the Syracuse Chapter of Uplifting Athletes hosted a rare disease patient family and provided them with a life changing experience.
Lillian Belfield is a 7-year-old from Mexico, NY and is battling anaplastic astroblastoma – a rare form of brain cancer. She was diagnosed in early 2015 and has continued to attend school despite radiation and chemotherapy treatments.
The Orange football team met Lillian and her family last summer. Since then, the Syracuse Chapter has maintained a connection with the Belfield family in line with its mission of inspiring the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.
Prior to the Syracuse spring scrimmage last Saturday morning, Lillian, twin sister Emma and the entire Belfield family were introduced on the field and presented the game ball prior to kickoff.
Each of the Uplifting Athletes nationwide network of college football student-athlete led chapters help bring the vision of Uplifting Athletes to life; which is to empower people to take action against rare diseases and inspires the medical community to find cures.
The challenges faced by the rare disease community are bigger than any one individual, team or organization can tackle alone. The grassroots effort of the Syracuse Chapter helps educate the local community and provides individual patients, like Lillian, with a life changing experience.
Once spring practice is over, the leadership team of the Syracuse Chapter will finalize the details for its fourth annual Life For Life. The event will be open to the public in 2016, so stay tuned for additional information coming soon.