Six years ago, Jake Merzigian and five of his buddies decided to participate in a fundraising event for St. Baldrick’s, a charity dedicated to fighting childhood cancer. Participation meant the six of them had to shave their heads.
Not only were they not daunted by this, but they were inspired to participate year after year. The small group of six has evolved into 335 “shavees” this year under the moniker the “Bald Entrepreneurs” and ha s raised $123,000 thus far. Merzigian, 45, champions this cause through his company, Zig Zibit. This year, the Bald Entrepreneurs were one of about 14 teams that participated in the one day event in March 2013 at the Factory in Wake Forest, NC.
“Everyone is so generous about dedicating their time,” Merzigian said. “There are five barber chairs and there are about a dozen stylists that rotate throughout the day, and they dedicate their time as well.”
Merzigian was interested in participating in the event because he is a father himself, “I have three healthy kids and could not imagine what a parent
has to go through seeing their child suffer with cancer. When you see it up close, you see that this is a small thing we can do to help.”
The event raises money through sponsors, reminiscent of read-a -thons of days past. It represents solidarity between shavees and cancer patients. Though most of the participants are male, more and more women are also participating in the event.
“This year, 13 women came through and they are usually people who are directly affected by cancer,” said Merzigian. “Either they are survivors themselves or have had a child with cancer. It’s very emotional.”
About Zig Zibit
Zig Zibit is a full service exhibit house located in Raleigh, NC. Zig Zibit designs, builds and rents custom tradeshow exhibits, offers a full line of portable displays, prints graphics in-house, offers full account management services and warehouses, and maintains our clients’ properties at our location. In addition, Zig Zibit has developed the expertise to help our clients with three-dimensional sales tools that can be used off of the trade show floor. From the beginning our motto has been, “whether you have a big Zibit, or a little Zibit, call Zig Zibit.”
About St. Baldrick’s
The St. Baldrick’s Foundation is a volunteer-driven charity committed to funding the most promising research to find cures for childhood cancers and give survivors long and healthy lives. St. Baldrick’s currently funds more in childhood cancer research grants than any organization except the U.S. government. As of mid-March, St. Baldrick’s has raised $14,571,440, have had 33,298 male shavees and 5,988 female shavees for a total of 39,286 shavees at 1,170 events. They have raised $103,450,166 in total grant money since 2005.