Our Kids Rock Cancer music therapists want you to know that bald truly is beautiful!
Tracie Sandheinrich, senior music therapist, explains that through so many of her music therapy sessions over the years, the kids she works with often bring up their feelings about losing hair during treatment, as well as its physical and emotional ramifications.
“Over the years, I watched kids be scared, terrified, worried — and yet, fearless — all the same time when it came to losing their hair,” Tracie says. “I knew I wanted to show my support for the patients I was working with, but also do everything I could to raise money for pediatric cancer research.”
More than 175,000 children from across the globe are diagnosed with cancer each year. Children in the United States are more likely to die from childhood cancer than any other disease — more than AIDS, asthma, cystic fibrosis, congenital anomalies and diabetes combined. Despite these staggering statistics, only three new drugs specifically developed to treat children with cancer have been approved in the past two decades. Less than 4 percent of the National Cancer Institute’s budget is dedicated to childhood cancer research.
After learning these statistics, and seeing the strength of her young rock stars, Tracie “braved the shave” in 2012. Her fellow music therapist, Ashley Warmbrodt, became a fellow shavee, on March 5 — together raising more than $9,000 for St. Baldrick’s Foundation.
St. Baldrick’s Foundation raises money to fund research for more than a dozen types of childhood cancer. The organization’s head-shaving events began as a challenge between businessmen and have grown from one event in 2000 to more than 1,300 events in 2013, raising critical funds for childhood cancer research. Events take place in pubs, restaurants, schools, churches, parks, malls, military bases, firehouses and any other place you can imagine.
Combined, Tracie (2012) and Ashley (2016) were able to raise over $9,000 for St. Baldrick’s.
“Some people might think it’s crazy or absurd to shave your head,” Tracie says. “But we did it for the kids and their families. We did it for the research. We did it for their lives, and to one day end cancer. Being bald truly is beautiful!”
To find out more information about the St. Baldricks’s Foundation or to donate online, visit www.stbaldricks.org.