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Celebrities with a Heart for Health

June 26, 2019

Celebrities with a Heart for Health

How celebrity golf tournaments and community fairs help to keep our neighbors healthy.

It’s not unusual to hear about celebrities backing a particular cause these days, but you might be surprised to learn how many of them put their time, influence and money behind health-care specific programs and groups – some of them right in your own backyards, directly helping you and your neighbors.

This is not a new trend, of course. One of the most notable and enduring efforts is attributed to comedian, actor and singer Danny Thomas, who founded St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis in 1962 (as a shrine to St. Jude Thaddeus, the patron saint of lost causes). The non-profit organization conducts research and provides free housing for parents to stay with their children long-term as they battle cancer and other childhood diseases.

Singer John Mayer launched the Heart and Armor Foundation to address a wide scope of mental and physical health issues suffered by veterans, which affected him after a tour in a wounded soldier barracks.

The Patrick Dempsey Center, focusing on quality of life programs for cancer survivors, was started by actor Patrick Dempsey in his home state of Maine as a way to give back to the community where his own mother received cancer treatment.

Here in Westchester, we have former NY Yankees player Mariano Rivera.

The MLB pitcher, who was recently inducted into the Hall of Fame, has been supporting numerous healthcare efforts in his adopted community for years, many of them in partnership with White Plains Hospital.

Rivera joined forces with WPH after a family member was treated at the hospital a few years ago. Earlier this week, the two organizations marked the fourth White Plains Hospital/Mariano Rivera Celebrity Golf outing to benefit hospital programs.

White Plains Hospital has also partnered with the Mariano Rivera Foundation in an annual health fair in New Rochelle each summer that provides essential screening and prevention services to those who are most in need. Through the health fair, WPH has reached hundreds of individuals in this largely Hispanic and underserved community with essential health education resources around asthma management, blood pressure control, stroke awareness, breast and colorectal screening, smoking cessation, flu shots, dental care and proper nutrition.

For more information on upcoming events, and ways to help support these and other impactful health programs in your community, visit White Plains Hospital and the Mariano Rivera Foundation.