St. Baldrick’s childhood cancer fundraiser set for Saturday
If You Go
What: St. Baldrick’s, the 10th annual benefit for childhood cancer research
When: 1-5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Eagle fire station, 425 E. Third St., Eagle
Information: This annual event raises money and awareness in the fight against pediatric cancer. For information, go to http://www.stbaldricks.org/events/EagleFire, or call 970-328-7244.
EAGLE — For a decade, people have been sacrificing their hair in the fight against childhood cancer, and Saturday they’ll do it again.
The Greater Eagle Fire Protection District is hosting the 10th annual St. Baldrick’s Foundation event.
It’s part of a nationwide event in which men and women show solidarity by having their heads shaved.
It’s not complicated. You collect pledges for getting your head shaved by a barber or stylist who volunteer their talents and shears. The money goes to the St. Baldrick’s Foundation to fund pediatric cancer research.
St. Baldrick’s helps fund research programs at more than 200 institutions across the country that treat kids with cancer.
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“Childhood cancer is a crisis, and we must do more for these kids,” said Kathleen Ruddy, St. Baldrick’s CEO. “Each child is irreplaceable, and unlike my hair, they don’t grow back once they have been lost.”
Locally, the Eagle fire department’s St. Baldrick’s event has raised more than $500,000.
Cindy Pettit is one of several people who gets shaved every year, and every year she has patrons who pay very generously to see her go bald. She raises in the neighborhood of $20,000 most years — a mighty respectable neighborhood.
“When you see the families and kids it has helped, it makes you realize how lucky we are,” Pettit said. “If we’re part of keeping a researcher working and they find a cure, you haven’t just saved one kid, you’ve saved many kids.”
The event is on the Saturday around St. Patrick’s Day.
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation was started in 1999 by three guys who wanted to help fund research for pediatric cancer.
One of the guys had really thick hair, so they decided if they shaved his head they could raise some money.
The idea was to get 17 people to shave their heads at $1,000 a head. Instead of raising $17,000, they raised $104,000.
Since 2005, volunteers have made it possible to award $127 million in grants, $25 million in 2013 alone.
Of the government funds for cancer research, only 4 percent goes to pediatric research.
Still, the survival stats have changed dramatically in the past 10 years. Instead of one in five kids surviving cancer, now one in five dies of it.
They only do research. St. Baldrick’s works with a team of oncologists, and together they decide who to support and for how much.
Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or email@example.com.
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