The ORU baseball team recently announced it is partnering with the Vs. Cancer Foundation to raise money and bring awareness to childhood cancer.
“We have a mutual friend of the program who lives in the area who approached us. He is connected to the Vs. Cancer Foundation and approached us with the idea. It just kind of grew from there,” said Head Coach Ryan Folmar. “[This project] is close to the athletics department and Mike Carter. I thought it was a good way to reach a lot of different people.”
The team is raising funds via donation links on Twitter through @ORUBaseball and @ORUFolmar and ORU Strong t-shirt sales.
Each player on the team is growing a mustache as a sign of support. They will hold a head and mustache-shaving event on March 26 following the IPFW game at Sports Clips on East 61st Street and South Yale Avenue.
“The head shaving that some teams choose to do is definitely a silly and simple act, and is in no way mandatory to participate with Vs. Cancer,” said Ashleigh Kincaid, Vs. Cancer director of marketing and hospi- tal relations. “But for kids who have no choice but to spend their time in treatment completely bald, it is a strong symbol of solidarity.”
Proceeds are split with half going toward childhood cancer research and the other half going to the Saint Francis Children’s Hospital Oncology Department to supply fun items and activities for patients.
“We feel that our model of giving helps kids in the future by finding cures and new treatments, but helps kids that unfortunately are having to fight this battle now,” Kincaid said. “By providing them with things like art therapy, music therapy, Playstations in their rooms, and things of that nature, we are assisting in letting them just be kids during treatment.”
This is the first year ORU baseball has worked with the Vs. Cancer Foundation, founded by childhood cancer survivor Chase Jones.
“Some people are great businessmen; some people are outstanding preachers,” said Folmar. “Our guys happen to be blessed in the athletic realm, so we try to use their platform, which happens to be baseball, to be able to reach people and give back to the community.”
Students who are unable to contribute financially are encouraged to share information about the fundraiser on social media.
“You can get on my twitter account [@ORUFolmar] and just spread the word,” Folmar said. “If you don’t have the money to donate, you can get on there and just start tweeting it out so we can reach the people who do have money and are able to give back.”
Story by Jadyn Watson-Fisher, Photo by Wyatt Bullard