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Heroes come in all shapes, sizes and places. One such hero, Vatauomalotetele Fanene, who is a Senior at Nu’uuli VocTech High School, has started a campaign to help a cousin and is calling it ‘Vatau’s Hope Drive’. According to Vatau, she is “supporting the fighters, admiring the survivors, honoring the taken and never giving up hope”, in an attempt to help her cousin Sharring Fa’amalo Fanene Niusulu, who was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia in April 2010.

Samoa News spoke with Vatau, who said “I am running the Vatau Hope Drive and one of the things I am trying to do is promote cancer awareness here in American Samoa. Many people know about the different cancers and what they can do to people and I am trying to keep American Samoa healthy,” she said.

Speaking on her efforts to raise funds to help her cousin Sharring, she said, “Last year in February, she came home to promote cancer awareness and seek public help. Members of  Hawai’i’s Bone Marrow Registry came with her, and many local people donated, but she still has not found a match.

“So, for Valentine’s Day, I started a Hope Drive with the help of my high school National Honor Society, friends from Faga’itua High School, Samoana High School, Tafuna High School, Leone High School, Fa’asao Marist and Nu’uuli Voc-Tech,” she said.

The group plans to wash cars to raise funds to help Sharring.

“Because of this sickness, she is unable to live a normal, pain free life,” said Vatau. “She is our family hero, a Leukemia Warrior! Be a part of a winning team for Hope.”

The ‘Car Wash Fundraiser’ to raise funds for Sharring is being held this Saturday from 7:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m. at Samoana High School, in front of their gymnasium.