For an individual who doesn’t care a lot about the way in which it appears to be like on him, Clark College pitcher and outfielder Zach Gitschier has spent a lot of the previous couple of years fascinated by hair.
With about 14 inches of it dangling all the way down to across the center of his again, the previous Lowell Catholic standout hasn’t thought a lot about the way it drapes over his shoulders or what model he ought to make of it. He brushes apart impolite feedback about the way in which it appears to be like, one time laughing off a “who’s the woman pitching,” comment from a spectator that brought about turmoil within the stands of a Lowell Publish 87 American Legion recreation.
As a substitute, rising out his hair over the past two years has at all times been a devotion to donating it, which he’ll do on Thursday when he lastly will get it reduce. The sophomore plans to ship the hair and no matter funds he can elevate to the Kids With Hair Loss group. Via every week, that fundraiser has already surpassed the unique $2,000 aim, and he hopes the donations will preserve coming.
He additionally hopes to present one thing past mere cash.
“The quantity of (feedback) you get for having lengthy hair as a man is form of humorous in my sense, however lots of people take it to coronary heart,” Gitschier stated. “The factor I need to stress to individuals is the positivity of all the pieces. It doesn’t actually matter when you have hair or in case you don’t have hair; the primary factor is that you just’re comfortable. By doing this, I’m hoping to make not solely my family and friends comfortable, but additionally (making) the individuals who want it most comfortable.”
Gitschier’s girlfriend jokes with him that she’s been ready for this haircut as a result of she needs her hair to be longer than his. However she and the opposite individuals near him know this isn’t simply any random flash of philanthropy. This donation has been a very long time coming.
The primary style of it got here within the sixth grade, when a trainer impressed Gitschier and his dad and mom to donate cash to the household of a younger boy battling most cancers. Gitschier met the grandmother of the boy, and after seeing how a lot of an impression the donation made, he realized simply how nice this kind of factor made him really feel. The concept to donate hair popped into his thoughts, however he didn’t have sufficient since Catholic faculties don’t let college students develop their hair previous their ears.
When Gitschier’s junior 12 months at Lowell Catholic rolled round, he came upon a youth he coached had lately been recognized with alopecia – a situation involving the lack of all physique hair. A dialog together with his dad and mom about it impressed him, and a plan — regardless of the principles about hair — was set in movement.
“His household had informed me about simply a variety of the self-conscious emotions he was feeling about not having any hair, that form of factor,” Gitschier stated. “Particularly at that age, he was solely – I need to say 11 or 12 on the time, perhaps even youthful. It simply began hitting me, this is able to be a superb factor to do.”
The concept to start out rising it out got here across the time hockey gamers develop out their hair, and he initially thought his hair would lengthen to only concerning the prime of his shoulders. However as soon as he realized a donation must be at the very least eight inches, he let it develop out.
After doing a little analysis, Gitschier got here throughout the Kids With Hair Loss basis, which was based by a girl whose niece battled most cancers and misplaced her hair. He selected to donate there as a result of all the cash donated goes towards hair alternative remedies. He reached out to them to see in the event that they have been nonetheless accepting donations through the pandemic — they have been.
The best way Gitschier figured it, a $2,000 aim would cowl two remedies at about $1,000 per therapy. However ever since posting a video explaining his trigger, the Lowell, Clark and surrounding communities have pooled collectively over $3,000 – far more than Gitschier anticipated throughout a time of monetary hardship.
“It’s an unreal feeling,” he stated in a textual content. “I can’t thank everyone sufficient and hopefully we will preserve exceeding my expectations!”
Contributions could be made to the GoFundMe fundraiser at www.gofundme.com/f/zach039s-campaign-for-children-with-hair-loss-inc?utm_source=buyer&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_campaign=p_cf+share-flow-1.