2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #5 – Amherst Middle School

This week, our #5 top fundraising school for 2017-2018 is Amherst Middle School!

Amherst Middle School has been Goin’ Bald for 4 years and has raised more than $77,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center! Each year, Amherst Middle School shows up for the fight against cancer and this year was no exception.  In 2018, Amherst Middle School raised more than $25,000!

This school’s success is thanks to teacher coordinator, Mr. Mansfield who dedicates the entire spring to planning for the big shave.

Amherst Middle School does more than collect online donations. The school has multiple fundraisers throughout the year leading up to the event and also hosted a fundraiser at Panera Bread to bring in extra bucks.

During the actual event, students test their knowledge with Bald for Bucks trivia and the school plays an inspiring and unique video featuring all of the participants and why they Go Bald.

More than 50 students, faculty and staff snipped and clipped their way to cancer cures. We can’t wait to see what Amherst Middle School does to surprise us next year!

2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #6 – North Collins Central School District

This week, our #7 top fundraising school for 2017-2018 is North Collins Central School District!

North Collins Central School District is one of the smallest in Erie County – but that doesn’t stop them from making a difference in the fight against cancer!

North Collins Central School District and the community came together and raised more than $21,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center! This school’s success is thanks to the hard work, dedication and passion of teacher coordinators Amy and Maria, but also thanks to the dedicated participants and North Collins community.

 

North Collins Central School District Goin’ Bald for Bucks!

 

The North Collins School District has been participating in Bald for Bucks since the beginning. Graduating seniors Tyler S., Mark S., Dylan T. and Joe L. have been participating in Bald for Bucks for over 10 years. We are amazed by their commitment to our cause!

More than 40 other participants snipped and clipped their way to cancer cures. We can’t wait to see what North Collins Central School District does next year as their Bald for Bucks tradition continues!

2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #7 – Elmwood Franklin Elementary School

This week, our #7 top fundraising school for 2017-2018 is Elmwood Franklin Elementary School!

Elmwood Franklin raised more than $18,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center! This school’s success is thanks to the hard work, dedication and passion of Mr. Andrew Deyell, Head of School, and Ms. Rebecca Murak , Director of Communications.

The school event had a special guest appearance from the Buffalo Bandits, DJ Anthony and Roswell Park’s very own Dr. Victor Filadora. Dr. Filadora joined the fun and shaved his head with his children, who are students at Elmwood Franklin. During the event, Dr. Filadora challenged the staff of Elmwood Franklin to come together and raise $1,000 on the spot – and if they did it, he would personally match their donation with another $1,000!

The teachers took Dr. Filadora’s challenge to heart and successfully raised the $1,000 by the end of the school day!

More than 40 participants snipped and clipped their way to cancer cures. Students who didn’t want to shave or cut but still wanted to fundraise were able to select the style option they wanted, and had a pink extension clipped into their hair.

 

Elmwood Franklin students who styled their hair with pink extensions!

 

We are grateful to have Elmwood Franklin leading the way for other elementary schools, and we can’t wait to see what they do next year as their Bald for Bucks tradition continues!  

2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #8 – Lancaster High School

This week, our #8 top fundraising school for 2017-2018 is Lancaster High School!

Lancaster High School raised more than $16,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center! This school’s success is thanks to the hard work, dedication and passion of seniors Meghan Swiatek, Brooke Szymusiak and Amber Oczowinski.

Lancaster-High-School-2018-Chairs
From left to right: Brooke, Amber and Meghan, Lancaster High School Bald for Bucks event co-chairs

As event chairs, Meghan, Brooke and Amber worked hard to include the entire school in fundraising for Bald for Bucks. They collected donations at Lancaster, hosted a dress-down day for all faculty and staff, and held competitions between the freshmen classes.

More than 60 participants snipped and clipped their way to cancer cures. We can’t wait to see what Lancaster High School does next year as their Bald for Bucks tradition continues!

Meghan, Brooke and Amber ended their senior year on a high note,.We wish them the best of luck in all their future endeavors!

2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #9 South Buffalo Charter School

This week our #9 top fundraising school is South Buffalo Charter School!

SBCS raised an incredible $15,111.00 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center! Thanks to the hard work of the teacher coordinator, Mrs. Sciortino, the school has improved tremendously year after year. They dedicate the entire year to fundraising for Bald for Bucks!  South Buffalo Charter School raised money through a school wide basket raffle, teacher only fundraising events, asking for donations from family and friends, popcorn day, and more!

Their event is unique because a day full of students shaving their heads ends with multiple teachers going bald! It is so fun for the students to see their teachers leading by example.  South Buffalo Charter School is a great example of a school community coming together to fight a very important cause!

 

2017-2018 Top Ten Schools: #10 – Northwood Elementary School

We will be featuring our top 10 schools that went Bald for Bucks during the 2017-2018 school year every Wednesday this summer. We are so proud of every school that went bald this year, everyone truly made a difference in the fight against cancer!

This week we kick off with Northwood Elementary School!

Northwood Elementary School has been Goin’ Bald for Bucks since 2012. Over the last 6 years, they’ve raised over $62,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center!

After Goin’ Bald at Northwood Elementary School!

 

Over 20 participants snipped and clipped their ways to cancer cures. Other students were invited to join the fun by making a donation at the purple hair spray station. Collectively, this amazing school raised over $12,000!

We can’t wait to see what Northwood Elementary does next year as their Bald for Bucks tradition continues!

Amherst Middle School’s Bald for Bucks Tradition

Since 2015, Amherst Middle School has raised over $75,000 for Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center by Goin’ Bald for Bucks. Their 2018 event raised over $25,000 and had nearly 60 participants. We asked Amherst Middle School teacher coordinator, Dave Mansfield, about the school’s success.

Amherst Middle School Goin’ Bald for Bucks!

Q. How did you and your school first get involved with Bald for Bucks?

A. In the spring of 2015, I decided to start asking around school to see if there was interest in holding a Bald For Bucks event.  I had already Gone Bald on three previous occasions.  Our high school held events in the past.  The response seemed to be pretty favorable, so I decided to take a chance and start planning Amherst Middle School’s first Bald For Bucks fundraiser.

Q. What made you decide to start a Bald for Bucks event?

A. In October 2013, my wife was diagnosed with breast cancer.  At that same time, I also had a couple of other family members going through cancer treatment.  Cancer was hitting a little too close to home for me and I thought about what I could do to help in some way.  Having participated in three previous events, I knew this was a good way to help in the fight against cancer and to show my students that could make a difference in the lives of someone they know who was dealing with cancer.

Q. Is your event in honor or in memory of someone special?

A. I personally am Goin’ Bald For Bucks in memory of Aunt Terri, Aunt Bernie, Delores Mrak and family friend Margie Sullivan.  I am also Goin’ Bald For Bucks to honor and support my wife Suzanne, my father, my brother-in-law Shane, my cousin Joe, my niece Jessica, Uncle Mike, and family friend Lauren Merlino.  They are all cancer survivors.

Q. What does into planning a Bald for Bucks event?

A. There is a  lot of preparation goes into planning a Bald For Bucks event.  There is so much to do In the months leading up to the event. You have to recruit members, show them how to fundraise, and teach them about what the Bald For Bucks movement is all about.  It can be stressful at times because you want to put on an event that is engaging and fun, but yet gets the message across that cancer is a serious issue. You also want to respect the memory of those who have passed but honor the survivors as well.  It can also be very fun. I get to meet and interact with students that I don’t usually deal with during the normal school day.

Q. What do you take away each year from hosting a Bald for Bucks event?

A. Each year I learn how students and teachers at my school have been affected by cancer. It is truly inspiring to see everyone working together to make a difference in the fight against cancer.  This only strengthens my belief that one day we will live in a cancer-free reality.

Q. Do you have any advice for other teachers who want to plan an event at their school?

A. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.  You will be pleasantly surprised at how many people are willing to help and to volunteer their services.  This is also a great way to teach your students that they can make a positive impact on society and have fun doing it at the same time.

Q. What makes your event unique?

A. Our event is unique because there is a lot going on at the same time.  We have a DJ/emcee, trivia questions, guest speakers, and video screens.  Each year, we create a presentation to honor all family and friends affected by cancer.  It is a powerful and emotional event that takes place right before the hair cutting begins. This year we will have a camera that can pan out into the crowd to keep the audience engaged and to make it more of an interactive event.  We are also introducing  “Watch the Hair Pile Grow” segments.

Q. Tell us some of your best fundraising tips:

A. Don’t be afraid to contact local businesses to donate gift certificates to raffle off or to make a monetary donation.  They will want to see that you are affiliated with a legitimate organization, so you will have to write a donation letter.  Social media is also a great way to seek donations.  Having a fundraiser at a local business where they donate a percentage of their sales to your Bald For Bucks fundraising campaign is another way to increase your fundraising total.  Some of our students set up a table in front of their house like a lemonade stand, with Bald For Bucks signs to let people know why they are collecting donations.

Lancaster High School Battles Against Cancer

As a student at Lancaster High School, Meghan Swiatek attended several Bald for Bucks events but never participated in it herself. But during her senior year, she knew she wanted to make a difference and help plan Lancaster’s 2018 Bald for Bucks.

Together with her two co-chairs, Brooke Szymusiak and Amber Oczowinski, the trio set a fundraising goal and got to work. Meghan said the first thing they did was spread the news about how students and faculty could participate. They came up with different ways to fundraise, including allowing students to collect donations in school, a dress-down day for all faculty and staff, and competitions between several freshman classes.

Lancaster-High-School-2018-Chairs
From L to R: Brooke Szymusiak, Amber Oczowinski and Meghan Swiatek

 

All these different techniques, as well as the passion and dedication of Meghan and her two co-chairs, helped Lancaster raise close to $15,000! She said all the hard work and late nights were totally worth it. Not only that but her, Brooke and Amber became even closer friends, experienced new opportunities together and learned new responsibilities, like time management.

Meghan wants to encourage any school or student leaders to participate in Bald for Bucks because it’s not too late to join in the fight against cancer.

“No matter how little or how much money your school raises, [it] will help to make a difference in the world, one way or another,” Meghan said. “Planning an event like this is something you will remember for the rest of your life and I would do the whole thing again in a heartbeat if I could.”

East Rochester is going bald to support a classmate!

Just before the start of her freshman year at East Rochester Senior High School, Hannah was diagnosed with cancer. Hannah started treatment right away in August, so her good friend Zoe wanted to do something to show her love and support for Hannah. Zoe decided to shave her head.

Zoe and her mom, Julia, got involved with the school and reached out to East Rochester’s Principal, Casey van Harssel. On board from the start, Mr. van Harssel suggested he shave his head at the high school’s homecoming pep rally on September 22. The school used their homecoming pep rally to express their support of Hannah and to kick off their fundraising efforts for Bald for Bucks!

Both East Rochester Middle Level Academy and Senior High School will officially be Goin’ Bald for Bucks on October 24th! Zoe and the team have already raised close to $3,000 for 13thirty Cancer Connect and Roswell Park Cancer Institute. Thank you East Rochester!

2016-2017 Top Ten Schools: #1 – Mill Middle School

Mill Middle School’s fundraising efforts earned them our number one spot for the 2016-2017 school year!  Aside from being our top fundraising school, they also had the most participants.  One hundred Mill Middle School students snipped, clipped, or shaved their way to help raise $50,821.15 for cancer research!  Thirteen of their one hundred students raised over $1,000!

In order to get people involved Mill Middle held a pep rally to get students excited for Goin’ Bald for Bucks, which resulted in their amazing number of participants! In addition to raising money on their own, students sold popcorn to boost their fundraising numbers, adding another $1,000! Due to their high number of participants, Mill Middle held two assemblies for the different grade levels when it was time to Go Bald! The assemblies were filled with high energy, making it exciting for all who were involved.

Great job Mill Middle School; you showed everyone how fun it is to go Bald for Bucks!