The drive is being organized by bone marrow donor center DKMS, who were involved with Tavarez's cause since shortly after her leukemia diagnosis in April 2010, and R.A.R.E. Media Group.
“Shannon wanted to recruit people everywhere to ‘get swabbed’ and help save the lives of those in need of a bone marrow transplant,” Tavarez' mother, Odiney Brown, said in a statement. “In her memory, our family and friends will work tirelessly to carry out her wish. It is our hope that Shannon’s legacy will continue to inspire other brave children battling leukemia.”
Registered donors must be between 18 and 55 years of age and in general good health. The cost to DKMS for registering a potential new bone marrow donor is $65.
Tavarez was performing in The Lion King when she was diagnosed with leukemia. Her story inspired thousands of bone marrow registrations both before and after her death. At this point, eight people who registered in her name have been contacted as potential matches for patients.
The Harlem School of the Arts is located at 645 St. Nicholas Ave. For more information, visit getswabbed.org.