Soon after Shane Rahmani, 22, lost a friend to cancer, he was diagnosed with cancer. In remission for three years, he founded Choose to Laugh with Ben Blumenfeld and Alexis Speed in the belief, based on his own experience, that a positive state of mind is vital to recovery.
The primary goals of Choose to Laugh are to attract and provide resources for cancer research, education and survival and to positively alter young people’s perceptions of the illness by the use of humor in education, resources and events.
To that end, the group launched its first Laugh Library and Screening Room at the Wellness Community Center of Santa Monica on Sunday, February 27.
Designed by U.K. designer Ella Cottrell, the new Laugh Library features DVDs, books, a 42-inch Plasma television, and an area that will seat eight to ten patients for group therapy.
Among the group’s other ventures was its Comedians for Cancer Benefit Show, in honor of National Cancer Survivors’ Day, that raised $15,000 for Choose to Laugh and associated organizations.
A DVD of the show is available via the group’s website, www.choosetolaugh.org, which also features positive approaches to combating the disease through magazine articles, poetry, and other suggested readings, as well as information on upcoming group initiatives.For more information about the Wellness Community go to www.twc-wla.org/welcome.htm.