Tag Archives: Dawn Skowronnek

Nooga.com – June 19, 2011

Sixth-grader raises money for kids with cancer

• Published Sunday, June 19th 2011

Photo credited to Rich Smith Photography.

 

Most sixth-graders summer plans are focused around vacations and summer camps, but for 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek, that just is not enough.

Jack has partnered up with the Children’s Hospital Foundation at Erlanger to organize a head-shaving event called Jack’s Chattanoggins to raise money for children’s cancer treatments.

To find out more about the event and how you can help, visit http://jackshaves.org/ or http://www.jackschattanoggins.org

To find out more about the Children’s Hospital Foundation, contact Amanda Whitaker at Children’s Hospital at (423) 778-8057

The event, which takes place Saturday, June 26, at the Chattanooga Market, will be more than just head-shaving. There will also be food, music, and an auction, which will include an original painting that was donated by artist Jill English, who lost her son to cancer.

For Jack, this will be the third time he has shaved his head to support children with cancer.

The head-shaving began when Jack was just 10 years old, after he was inspired by a book he read called Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie, by Jordan Sonnenblick, in which a boy shaves his head to support his younger brother after he is diagnosed with leukemia.

“He finished the book and he just announced to me that he needed to shave his head,” his mother, Dawn Skowronnek, said.

Skowronnek said she wanted to teach her son that he could do more than just shave his head to support these kids, that he could also raise money to help pay the high cost of their treatment.

The first two year’s that Jack shaved his head, he signed up to do so through St. Baldricks, a national, non-profit organization that encourages people to shave their heads and donate to help cancer patients. In those two years, Jack raised more than $5,000.

This year, Skowronnek said Paul Smith, general manager of the Chattanooga Market, contacted her and asked if Jack would like to have his own event there.

“I was driving down the road and I listened to the story (on the radio) about Jack … and what he was doing and I wanted to do something,” Smith said. “It was just heartwarming and it sounded like it needed a larger audience.”

As a result of that, and the support of the Children’s Hospital Foundation, Jack’s Chattanoggins was created.

“I plan on doing this for the rest of my life,” Jack said. “It made me feel like you don’t have to know who the person is you just have to have a heart and care.”

One day, he said he hopes to have 1,000 people shave their heads at the event.

Smith, who has signed up to have his head shaved, said, “The best way for people to get involved … is to come in and put a little money down on our heads.”

How it works

Volunteers, called “shavees” will shave their heads in support of the children who lose their hair to cancer treatments. They will then receive donations in their names from friends and family members who want to support them.

All of the money raised will go to the Children’s Hospital Foundation and help fund treatments for the more than 50 Chattanooga-area children who are diagnosed with cancer each year.

Chattanooga Times Free Press – June 27, 2011

published Monday, June 27th, 2011

Shear devotion

Jack Skowronnek feels his shaved head at Chattanoggins, a  fundraising event for pediatric cancer care organized by the 12-year-old at the Chattanooga Market on Sunday.

Jack Skowronnek feels his shaved head at Chattanoggins, a fundraising event for pediatric cancer care organized by the 12-year-old at the Chattanooga Market on Sunday.

Photo by John Rawlston.

Greg and Kelly Heard vividly remember the day more than 12 years ago when they shaved their young son Cody’s head. The boy was battling a nerve tissue cancer called neuroblastoma, and the side effects of chemotherapy were just kicking in.

“His hair was coming out in patches, so I said, ‘Buddy, if you let me shave yours I’ll let you shave mine,” said Greg Heard. “He stood up on the commode and shaved it right off.”

Greg Heard keeps his head shaved as a tribute to Cody, who died shortly before his sixth birthday. And on Sunday afternoon, Cody’s younger brother Lucas, 15, joined his father, shaving off all of his hair at the Jack’s Chattanoggins event at the Chattanooga Market.

More than 60 people, ages 4 to 70, parted with their locks Sunday to raise money and show support for children who lose their hair during chemotherapy treatment.

The event, hosted by the Children’s Hospital Foundation, is named for Signal Mountain Middle-schooler Jack Skowronnek. Jack was inspired to get his head shaved two years ago by the book “Drums, Girls & Dangerous Pie,” in which a boy shaves his head in solidarity with his little brother, who has leukemia.

Over the last two years, Jack, 12, has raised money through head-shaving events for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a nonprofit that raises money for childhood cancer research.

“I want kids to know it’s OK to be bald,” said the freshly-shaved Skowronnek, who usually sports what he calls “Justin Bieber hair.” A shaved head isn’t a sign of weakness, he believes: “It’s a sign of fight. It shows that people are alive and they are fighting.”

When the Children’s Hospital Foundation decided to hold its own head-shaving fundraiser, organizers asked Jack to be the face of the event.

The funds raised Sunday will primarily be directed to Erlanger’s Center for Pediatric Cancer and Blood Disorders.

Some participants raised money through sponsors online; others brought in checks. Bekki Deck, of Chattanooga, raised $1,800 online to shave her blond hair.

Deck, 31, admitted she was a bit nervous. “I mean, I had no idea what shaped head I had,” she said, laughing. But after the shave she said she felt “liberated” and happy to contribute something to the fight.

“We’ve all had our scares, and we all know someone impacted by cancer,” she said.

Many Chattanooga Market vendors donated a percentage of their Sunday sales to the fundraiser, said Ali Dunn, annual giving director with Erlanger Health System Foundations.

“It’s been really incredible to see how ready people have been to pitch in. Some of the stories we’ve seen today have been pretty incredible,” she said.

Other “shavees” included mothers who wanted to show their own children diagnosed with cancer how to be brave, and a man who hasn’t parted with his ponytail for decades, and Chattanooga Market owner Paul Smith.

Heard said the event was an important step for Lucas and for her family. They look for ways to remember Cody, who would have graduated high school this year.

“It’s something special. Sometimes you feel like people have forgotten about it, and so you just look for ways to keep remembering him,” she said.

Lucas said he plans to get his own head shaved each year as a tribute to his brother.

And if Jack Skowronnek has his way, there will be opportunities to do that every summer.

“I want it to keep going, and I want it to get really big and spread really far,” he said.

ChattanoogaPulse.com – June 27, 2011

Cancer Charity Event Raises Over $17,000

Written by Pulse Staff

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

June 27, 2011 – 8:04 am

In only its third year in existence, a local charity has set a new record.  Jack’s Chattanoggins is the brainchild of 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek. When he was ten, he read a book that inspired him to shave his head to show kids with cancer that being bald was OK.  He raised $1,200 that year.  Last year he got about a dozen other people involved and raised $3,200.  Sunday at the Chattanooga Market, the event saw more than 60 people shave their heads, raising more than $17,000, nearly half of that coming in direct donations during the event.

That money will stay right here in Chattanooga to be used at Children’s Hospital at Erlanger in the Pediatric Oncology Unit.

Chattanooga Times Free Press – June 26, 2011

published Sunday, June 26th, 2011

Locks surrendered during CFC win

CFC's Chris Ochieng controls the ball in midair during the match against Atlanta on Saturday. The Chattanooga Football Club played against the Atlanta Silverback Reserves at Finley Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Photo by Jake Daniels.
CFC’s Chris Ochieng controls the ball in midair during the match against Atlanta on Saturday. The Chattanooga Football Club played against the Atlanta Silverback Reserves at Finley Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The halftime entertainment at most Chattanooga Football Club games at Finley Stadium usually features a game or two on the field for some of the boys and girls in attendance to play.

On Saturday, during Chattanooga FC’s 2-1 win over the Atlanta Silverbacks Reserves, CFC’s Robbie Hill and Tom Webster got involved in the action. But instead of doing anything with a ball, the show involved the players’ hair and a pair of clippers.

Hill and Webster got buzz cuts, in front of the announced crowd of 1,653, to support the Jack’s Chattanoggins fundraiser for the Children’s Hospital Foundation at Erlanger, a project started by 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek of Signal Mountain.

Hill said he let his hair get a bit long to make Saturday’s show more dramatic.

“I was going to get it cut a few weeks ago, but I decided I’d wait,” the Englishman said with a smile. “I’m always happy to help out with charities and this was a great cause.”

Donations were accepted throughout the game and the main Jack’s Chattanoggins event is today at the Chattanooga Market in the First Tennessee Pavilion.

Hill’s teammate, reserve defender Thomas Clark, handled his clipping duties. Jack’s mother, Dawn, cut Webster’s hair. Despite being an Air Force Academy graduate, Clark said that was his first time with wielding the clippers.

After a scoreless first half, the action picked up dramatically in the second. In the 65th minute, CFC fullback Nick Odeny pushed forward and scored on a breakaway to put CFC up 1-0.

Five minutes later, Atlanta’s Aziz Izmour was tackled in the box by CFC’s Nick Chase, who had been pushed in the back moments before, and the referee awarded the Silverbacks a penalty kick. The score was tied soon after, but it was a penalty kick in the 89th minute that lifted CFC to a win.

Mark Beattie flipped the ball toward a defender who inadvertently touched the ball with his hands, giving CFC a chance to regain the lead. Forward Chris Ochieng sent the ball into the net for the victory, which kept CFC in first place in the National Premier Soccer League Southeast Conference standings with a 5-1-1 record in league play.

“I was nervous, but after the referee blew the whistle I calmed down and picked a spot and hit it,” Ochieng said.

Chattanooga FC visits the Georgia Revolution next Saturday before hosting the Under-20 team for CF Monterrey, in Mexico, on July 4.

Nooga.com – July 4, 2011

Event raises more than $17,000 to benefit pediatric cancer

• Published Monday, July 4th 2011

Jack Skowronnek before and after one side of his head was shaved. This is the third year he has shaved his head to support kids with cancer, and he says he never plans to stop.

More than 60 men and women showed up at the Chattanooga Market last Sunday to shave their heads in support of pediatric cancer patients.

Jack’s Chattanoggins, started by 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek, was sponsored by the Children’s Hospital Foundation and raised over $17,000 for the foundation. All of the proceeds will go to support children with cancer and help pay for their treatments.

“Having this be the first year we were doing this as a city-wide event, I really had no idea what to expect,” said Dawn Skowronnek, Jack’s mother. “I just remember when we started shaving- it was packed. It was standing room only, it was really incredible.”

Dawn said that after the event began, more than 30 walk-ups came because they had decided to donate and shave their head for the cause.

“Next year in my mind I’m going to call it a mega-shave,” Skowronnek said. “I want at least 100 people.”

As for Jack, he still plans to shave his head every year.

“I wanted people my age undergoing chemotherapy to realize that a shaved head isn’t a sign of weakness- it’s a sign of a fight,” Jack said. “It shows that people are alive and they are fighting.”

Jack began shaving his head three years ago to support kids with pediatric cancer after reading a book called “Drums, Girls, and Dangerous Pie.

This was his first year planning Jack’s Chattanoggins with his mother. He and his family had previously partnered with St. Baldricks to raise money for children with cancer.

Two brave “shavees” pose after getting their heads shaved. Contributed photo.

From the Signal Mountain Weekly News – May 25, 2011

Skowronnek seeks ‘Chattanoggins’ to raise funds for kids with cancer

Recruiting event at Buffalo Wild Wings in Hixson Wednesday, May 25

By Emily Crisman

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

photo

Signal Mountain resident Jack Skowronnek, 12, is looking for volunteers willing to shave their heads to raise funds for pediatric cancer treatment at Children’s Hospital. He will be at a recruiting event tonight at Buffalo Wild Wings downtown from 6 to 8 p.m. His Jack’s Chattanoggins head-shaving event will be at the Chattanooga Market Sunday, June 26 beginning at 11 a.m.

Signal Mountain resident Jack Skowronnek, 12, is busy convincing locals to aid in his fundraising effort for pediatric cancer by shaving their heads. Volunteers find sponsors and agree to go under the razor blade together at Jack’s Chattanoggins, an event to be held at the Chattanooga Market Sunday, June 26 beginning at 11 a.m.

Any business or organization interested in hosting an event or becoming involved should contact Dawn Skowronnek at 994-7680.

He is hosting several recruiting events around town to boost awareness, participation and therefore fundraising. Jack will be at Buffalo Wild Wings in Hixson to give out information and register participants tonight from 6 to 8 p.m. Customers can also request 10 percent of their bill tonight be donated to Jack’s Chattanoggins.

Chattanoggins is a larger-scale operation than Skowronnek’s previous efforts, in which he raised more than $1,300 the first year on his own in sponsorship funds and $3,200 the next with the help of 13 friends and neighbors.

“It struck me as admirable for such a young boy to want to do something so big that impacts so many people like cancer [does,]” said Chattanooga Market general manager Paul Smith, who has lost several vendors to cancer just in the past few years. “I felt the event needed a larger audience, and I thought this would be a way to embrace helping others who are suffering from cancer.”

When Jack first had the idea to shave his head at age 10, he had never actually met a child with cancer, but he wanted to show kids with cancer it’s OK to be bald after being inspired by the book “Drums, Girls and Dangerous Pie.” His mother, Dawn Skowronnek, then told him about the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, an organization which raises money for childhood cancer through people who volunteer to shave their heads, many of whom are firefighters.

In the course of planning this year’s event, Jack has developed a deeper connection to the cause through kids with cancer he has come into contact with.

“It’s a little scary,” said Jack, recalling a recent tour through the oncology unit at Children’s Hopital. “I heard a little boy screaming and crying because they were taking marrow out of his bones. I’ve read about this, but I haven’t seen it, and that was the worst scream I’ve ever heard.”

Jack saw an article on Signal Mountain resident Peyton Ogle, 6, who is currently in remission after suffering from lymphoblastic leukemia. Skowronnek contacted the family, and Peyton’s parents started a team to participate in the event.

Jack’s goal this year is to find 50 people to volunteer to shave their heads at Chattanoggins. Anyone can register to participate, and all proceeds from the event will go to Children’s Hospital to fund pediatric cancer treatment. Register here by clicking on the “Register as a Shavee” link.

Donations will also be accepted on the day of the Jack’s Chattanoggins event and at the recruiting events.

Raising Awareness of Pediatric Cancer Fundraiser on WRCB’s 3 Plus You

We always enjoy visiting our friends at the 3 Plus You Show – Jed Mescon, Julie Edwards, Cindy Sexton and David Karnes. Somehow, whether scheduled or not, my kids always end up on screen! However, today, we were there with a purpose – talking about Jack’s Chattanoggins. We are less than a month away from our 2011 and are in the middle of our media blitz. It’s so much fun and I enjoy watching Jack as he hones his public speaking skills, a unique opportunity for a child his age.

Enjoy watching!

12-Year-Old Challenges Community to Shave Heads for Pediatric Cancer

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

May 1, 2011

Contact: Dawn Skowronnek 423-994-7680
dawn.skowronnek@att.net

12-Year-Old Challenges Community to Shave Heads for Pediatric Cancer
Event set to take place June 26 at Chattanooga Market

Chattanooga, Tenn., − On June 26, 2011, the First Tennessee Pavilion in Chattanooga will be the site of a hair-raising event. Well, more like a hair-falling event. That’s when people will be lining up to shave their heads in support of pediatric cancer care. Thanks to the efforts of 12-year-old Jack Skowronnek, “Jack’s Chattanoggins” will be teaming up with the Children’s Hospital Foundation at Erlanger Hospital and its Pediatric Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders to raise money – and awareness – for children’s cancer treatment through a head-shaving event at the Chattanooga Market. Jack and his Chattanoggins will be raising money as “shavees” by soliciting donations from friends and family. Anyone can register to participate, and all proceeds from the event will go to Children’s Hospital to help fund life-saving pediatric cancer treatment.

Inspired two years ago by the book “Drums, Girls & Dangerous Pie”, Jack decided to shave his head to show kids with cancer that it’s okay to be bald. After some research by his mom, Dawn Skowronnek, Jack discovered that he could shave his head and raise money for the research and treatment of childhood cancer through the St. Baldrick’s Foundation. That first year, Jack raised over $1,300. In 2010, Jack repeated his head-shaving event, and convinced some friends to jump on the bandwagon. The result was over $3,000 in donations, along with local businesses donating their time and efforts to help feed, entertain and shave heads.

This year, Jack has teamed up with the Children’s Hospital Foundation to make this event a city-wide affair. Thanks to Paul Smith and the Chattanooga Market, Jack will have a large venue for his Chattanoggins to shave their heads. The event will be organized and managed by Dawn Skowronnek and Children’s Hospital Foundation, and promoted via social media channels, grass-roots efforts, as well as radio ads with media partner, the Brewer Media Group. Jack is hopeful that he can convince local firefighters, police and perhaps some local Chattanooga celebrities to become shavees to help his cause.

Jack’s Chattanoggins is currently looking for opportunities to partner with restaurants throughout the city and suburbs for a series of recruiting events. Any business or organization that is interested in being part of this great event can contact Dawn Skowronnek at 423-994-7680. Individuals or groups that want to have their head shaved on June 26 can go to www.JackShaves.org and become a Chattanoggin by clicking on the “Register as a Shavee” link. You do not need to shave your head to support the event; online donations and volunteering the day of the event are equally important.

The event will begin at 11:00 AM on Sunday, June 26 at the First Tennessee Pavilion. Donations will also be accepted on the day of the event.
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