Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

A dream come true as Lauren meets her idol

by Diarmúid Pepper

A local teenager’s dream came true, as the Make-A-Wish Foundation organised a meeting between Lauren Fitzgerald and her hero Emma Watson. 

Sacred Heart student Lauren is battling a rare and complex form of cancer and she told the Make-A-Wish Foundation about her dream to meet Harry Potter star Emma Watson.

Make-A-Wish is a charity that fundraises in order to grant life-changing wishes for children with serious illnesses and medical conditions. 

Lauren’s mother, Mary Clare, spoke to The Examiner about how the surprise encounter came about: “Make-A-Wish asks children what they would like to do and the charity tries its best to grant this wish for the children,” explained Mary Clare. 

“Initially, they said to us that it would be very unlikely that Lauren would get to meet Emma, given her busy schedule. 

“We met with the charity back in March and they kept in touch with us since, and Emma’s team said that she would like to help the charity. Before Christmas, they rang and said that we could meet her.”

In the run-up to Christmas, Lauren had a visit to the Warner Brothers Studio Tour in London, which is famed for its Harry Potter attractions.

Newry teenager Lauren Fitzgerald meets her idol Emma Watson, made possible through the Make-A-Wish Foundation charity.

The next day, Lauren got to have a meeting with the world-famous Emma Watson. 

Mary Clare said: “Lauren is a huge Harry Potter fan, so she was asking Emma questions about the making of the films and other films that she has done, such as the recent Little Women. It was brilliant and she was lovely and very welcoming.”

Having come to the end of the immunotherapy treatment, Lauren’s school, family, and friends began raising funds for the teenager to go to New York to access a vaccine that could reduce the risk of relapse. 

Lauren is currently in the middle of the trial, which is due to end in November of this year, and Mary Clare says that she is “back at school and doing well”.