Department of External Affairs
Office of Public Affairs
Contact: John P. Broder
Vice President-External Affairs


“Rock 2 Beat Pediatric Cancer,” the second Annual Music Therapy Dinner to benefit the Cancer Center for Kids (CCFK) at Winthrop-University Hospital, brought close to 300 pediatric cancer patients, their families and friends together on November 10 at the New Hyde Park Inn for a night of lively music, dining and dancing. The event was a great success, raising close to $40,000 for the CCFK’s Music Therapy Program, which promotes health and well-being by helping patients and their families cope with cancer diagnosis and treatment through the universal language of music.

CCFK music therapist Glenn Schifano and His Boy Elroy Band created a lively musical program, igniting the event’s “Rock” festivities with their musical talents. The Center’s patients inspired guests with their stirring performance of “The Journey,” a song they composed especially for this year’s event. A moving photographic slide show featuring the children was just one way that the Center was able to pay tribute to its patients and the Music Therapy Program that has become an integral part of their success.

In addition to the kids enjoying the opportunity to jam with the band, songstress Tara Schmitt of Charlie’s Champions Foundation joined in on the fun and brought the crowd to its feet with her rousing rendition of “Me and Bobby McGee.”

Mark Weinblatt, MD, Chief of the Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology and Director of the Cancer Center for Kids, praised the children’s bravery and resilience, warmly acknowledging the friendship and philanthropy that made the Rock 2 Beat event possible. Practice Manager Linda Sweeney was beaming with pride as she gave rave reviews of the event’s youngest performers. “They are the real stars of the evening,” she said.

Winthrop-University Hospital together with its affiliated practitioners have collaborated to create the Cancer Center for Kids. The Cancer Center for Kids’ services are provided by both the Hospital and Pediatric Hematologists/Oncologists affiliated with Winthrop Pediatric Associates, P.C. (“WPA”) who utilize both the state-of-the-science facilities of the Hospital and WPA’s new outpatient practice.

Diagnosing and treating the range of cancers and blood disorders in children is the focus of specialists in Winthrop’s Cancer Center for Kids. Staffed by pediatric hematologists/oncologists with decades of experience, the Center is a unique regional resource that caters to children’s medical needs and also addresses the psychosocial issues they and their families face.

For more information about the CCFK or its Music Therapy Program, visit the CCFK website at, or call Linda Sweeney at (516) 663-9400.

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