OSWEGO – It’s time to come clean – clean shaven.
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the largest private funder of children’s cancer research, will host one of its signature head-shaving events at the Lake Ontario Event and Conference Center, East First Street, on April 15. The event will run from 1-4 p.m.
More than 100 “shavees” are expected to shave their heads to raise money for lifesaving childhood cancer research, Dan Witmer, event organizer, told Oswego County Today.
Every two minutes a child is diagnosed with cancer worldwide. And, in the U.S. one in five kids diagnosed won’t survive.
Those who do survive often suffer long-term effects from treatments too harsh for their developing bodies.
As the largest private funder of childhood cancer research grants, St. Baldrick’s is leading the charge to take childhood back from cancer.
From its beginnings, St. Baldrick’s has believed that kids deserve the chance to be kids – fun-loving, carefree, refreshingly honest, and always a little goofy – and deserve the chance at a healthy future.
That’s why donations raised at events like this have made it possible for St. Baldrick’s to fund more than $232 million to support the best childhood cancer research, wherever it takes place.
In its first 11 years, the annual Oswego event has raised more than $580,000.
Last year, about 125 shavees, volunteers and barbers helped raise close to $52,000, Witmer said.
After starting with just 37 shavees and raising $11,500 in 2007, the local group soared to highs of $97,500 with 205 shavees in 2015; $96,000 with 238 shavees in 2014; and $93,000 with 231 shavees in 2013.
“Last year we had teams of just three or four people, and we had the Oswego State men’s lacrosse team – with about 40 team members,” he said. “This year, we’d like to invite sports teams, businesses, schools, our first responders – anyone and everyone – to get involved.”
This year’s event will be more family-friendly than the previous fundraisers, he added.
“We plan on having more games and activities for children. So, whether you’re shaving or just attending the event, there will be something for the whole family to see and do,” said Terra Pritchard, a member of the planning committee.
There will also be a silent auction and raffles the day of the event.
“We do have some new committee members – a Fulton hockey mom, an Oswego trades union guy, an assistant SID from the college and a few college undergrads – plus the old guard!” Witmer said. “We’re just starting to ask for and collect donations. So, it’s a little too early to mention specific items.”
“We’re busy now, collecting donations from local businesses,” agreed committee member Susan DiBlasi. “There are so many ways for people to help, whether it’s by registering to shave and raising money, or helping out, or by making some sort of donation.”
As the largest private funder of childhood cancer research grants, the St. Baldrick’s Foundation believes that kids are special and deserve to be treated that way.
St. Baldrick’s is leading the charge to take childhood back from cancer by funding some of the most brilliant childhood cancer research experts who are working to find cures and better treatments for all childhood cancers.
Kids need treatments as unique as they are – and that starts with funding research just for them.
To donate, register as a shavee, barber or volunteer for the Oswego event, or to learn more about the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, go to www.stbaldricks.org today and help support the best cancer treatment for kids, Witmer said.