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Column: Until we find a cure

Cancer has affected nearly everyone in some way. Whether you know someone who is battling or know of someone who has gone through it, you know the damage it can cause.

I hope that one day people will no longer have to go through the pain of losing someone or think of losing someone due to this terrible disease.

I understand that finding a cure is much more difficult than we want it to be, but there are people constantly working to discover that lifesaving cure.

St. Baldrick’s is a not-for-profit organization that aims to find cures for childhood cancers. The groundbreaking clinical trials and research would not be possible if it weren’t for ordinary people doing the extraordinary.

There are events held worldwide by people, businesses, schools and more. People come together to “rock the bald” to show how cancer patients lose their hair during treatment and raise funds for research that could save lives.

My family has been hosting St. Baldrick’s events for over a decade, and it has grown tremendously. What started out as less than 20 people shaving their heads in a small pub has turned into over 150 participants (including shavees, barbers and volunteers) in a large banquet hall.

Our events in total have raised over $600,000 throughout the 13 years and this year’s raised over $85,000. We couldn’t have done it without the amazing people that make this event possible and a huge success.

My parents decided to start hosting their own event after my dad wanted to shave his head for the cause. My mom said that they should “go big or go home” and become volunteer event organizers themselves.

We continued to raise more and more funds for childhood cancer research. We never thought that the event would have grown the way it did, but we couldn’t be prouder of the impact that St. Baldrick’s has had on so many lives.

My parents have been asked many times if they have been affected by childhood cancer. They are lucky enough to say they haven’t, but they wanted to make a difference for those who have.

Although I don’t shave my head for St. Baldrick’s, I still try to do my part by helping in any way I can. I help my parents before, during and after with raffles, merchandise sales and miscellaneous tasks that make the event successful.

One of my proudest moments is when I helped start a St. Baldrick’s event at my junior high when I was in seventh grade. A couple teachers shaved their heads in front of the school and a group of students sold merchandise during the week.

It was an awesome feeling to see young people come together for an amazing cause. I even received a letter from the foundation congratulating me on organizing my first event that raised over $600. I still have that letter hanging on a memory board to remind me how much good can come out of a small idea.

St. Baldrick’s has been a huge part of my life, and I love the feeling that I am making a difference in the world.

One day, I hope a cure is found.

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