David Goldwasser: "Marisa loved fantasy fiercely and planned for us to write a book together once she graduated from Duke University.  Her sad and untimely death left me no choice but to write this novel together, but in a different way."  These books are finished and now available for purchase.  A portion of the proceeds of the sale of these books in any form will go to the Marisa Fund.  See the "Books By Dave" Page to learn more!

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Marisa's father initially established the Marisa Fund in 2005 to support research in Pediatric Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation at Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian and the Columbia University Department of Pediatrics.  Since February of 2011, our fight and research has continued at the Maria Fareri Children's Hospital (at Westchester Medical Center in Valhalla, NY) under the leadership of Dr. Mitchell Cairo, M.D., where he is Chief of Pediatric Hematology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation; Director of the Children and Adolescent Cancer and Blood Disease Center and Professor of Pediatrics, Medicine, Pathology, Microbiology & Immunology and Cell Biology and Anatomy.

Funding research that leads to curing childhood cancers is at the heart of all of our hard work.  Our founder and Executive Director Dave Goldwasser along with dozens of dedicated volunteers have a common vision … “To bring hope and lifesaving treatments to children battling cancer.”  

If you want to help us in a different way, 
Then, spend some time ... We always need volunteers.

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save lives

Worldwide, a child is diagnosed with cancer every 3minutes.


That's 20 Kids in One Hour!

Finding A Cure!

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Dr. Cairo’s research is unique in that his findings are translated into patient care and have a direct and indirect impact on saving the lives of children, adolescents and adults. The current focus of Dr. Cairo’s research program includes:

Novel therapies for childhood, adolescent and adult cancer;
Reduced intensity conditioning and stem cell transplantation in patients with malignant and serious blood and genetic disorders;
Cord blood stem cell biology research and application with regenerative medicine;
Genetic biology of Leukemia and Lymphoma;
and development of targeted cellular immunotherapy for malignant diseases. 

The Fund also provides significant financial assistance to families of cancer patients who are unable to meet the high costs of their children's care.  Each and every donation* to the Marisa Fund will make an important difference in the lives of our young patients and the future of all children with cancer.

Thank you for choosing to honor Marisa's memory and for lending your support to this cause.  The funds raised will help to improve the chances of survival for children undergoing blood and bone marrow transplantation, and to reduce the risks of their associated therapies.  We hope that future children will not suffer as Marisa did from the complications of her therapy.

The Marisa Fund is a partner with the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation.

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Our goal is to end the suffering


Learn how we're helping to make a change.


Established in 2005, the Marisa Fund helps kids with cancer and their families.  As a partner of the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation, the Marisa Fund provides funds for research to generate less toxic treatment protocols for children with cancer.  It is our goal to cure the patient and kill the cancer.  We also provide financial assistance for families when insurance is not enough.

Helping Kids With Cancer / Friends For Life

Incredibly, one in 350 children will be diagnosed with cancer by the age of 18.  In 1975 the cure was only 20%. Through innovative clinical and basic research the cure rate of childhood cancer now exceeds 80%.  
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Supporting Research in Pediatric Blood and Bone Marrow Transplantation

Together, we can make a difference

Our main fundraiser event is the Rockland Road Runners' 5 Mile Turkey Trot for the Marisa Fund. It is held every Thanksgiving Day morning and has become the largest running event in Rockland County, drawing over 3,000 participants from the NY Metro area and beyond. Join us this coming November at Rockland Lake for a truly memorable running experience!