Triangle Now Spotlight: Be Loud! Sophie

courtesy Be Loud! Sophie Foundation

You can groove for good Aug. 24 and 25, when the Be Loud! Sophie Foundation hosts its annual Be Loud! weekend of music at Cat’s Cradle. The fourth annual fundraiser features local bands like Matthew Sweet and Sex Police at the iconic Chapel Hill venue. Niklaus Steiner  and his wife, Lucy, founded the event to honor their daughter Sophie’s legacy by maintaining quality of life for local youth living with cancer. “It’s all about helping young adults maintain their dignity and their independence while in cancer treatment,” says Steiner.

The foundation funds psycho-social support programs for adolescents and young adults at UNC Hospitals, and Steiner says the original idea came from his daughter. When battling germ-cell cancer in November 2012, Sophie wanted to alleviate the frustrations she experienced as a teenager in a children’s hospital for future patients, Steiner says. “There aren’t a lot of hospitals doing this, but we realize that this age group is so different, and so unique. They needed a program.”

Sophie passed away in 2013, and her parents got to work to bolster other teenagers in children’s hospitals and young adults in wings with much older patients. Last year, the two-day concert event raised $45,000, and the foundation hopes to top that this year. Fundraising through music is what Sophie would have wanted, Steiner says. “Everything we do is in the spirit of Sophie, and what Sophie would enjoy … We don’t do black tie dinners, or a 5K run. She loved music and she loved our community.”
Catherine Currin

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