DARIEN – For the second year in a row, Darien high school student Ethan Lublin has coordinated his own independent St. Baldrick’s fundraiser, raising $ 7,500.
Darien’s fire departments usually hold a citywide event where attendees get their heads shaved to raise money to fight childhood cancer. Lublin was the best fundraiser in the past two years that the event was held.
But when the event in the city was canceled last year, the then sixth grader took matters into their own hands. Last year, he raised nearly $ 7,000 in a Zoom event with about 60 attendees taking part. This year he single-handedly held a smaller event with a few friends.
Lublin surpassed his total from last year at this year’s event on April 24, raising $ 7,500 for the charity. His team has raised more than $ 10,000.
Lublin said he started doing St. Baldrick’s when he was in the fourth grade because he had a friend who was recently diagnosed with cancer.
“Getting involved with St. Baldrick’s has been a way for me to show support and hopefully end childhood cancer,” he said.
St. Baldrick’s, a fundraising campaign for childhood cancer research, offers participants the opportunity to shave their heads in exchange for donations.
Shane Smith, vice president of fire, first began attending a St. Baldrick’s event in Stamford in Bradford’s in 2007. In 2008 and 2009, fellow firefighters from Darien began joining him.
Eventually, the event was moved to the Darien Fire Department for its own 2013 event, which grew to include all three fire departments participating.
In the first year, 27 people shaved their heads and raised $ 10,637. In 2017, 73 shaved their heads and lifted almost 10 times more, for a total of $ 93,994. Last year, Darien’s Fire Department event raised more than $ 38,000.
Smith said he decided not to hold the meeting in March this year, when it usually takes place, but is aiming for possibly late summer or fall, depending on pandemic protocols.
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation is a volunteer-driven charity dedicated to funding the most promising research to find a cure for childhood cancer and help survivors live a long, healthy life.
The name “St. Baldrick’s” is a combination of the words “bald” and “St. Patrick’s,” since the first event was held in 2000 on March 17th, St. Patrick’s Day.