By Matt Olson
On Saturday, March 9, students at Union will take the “Dutchman Dip” for the second consecutive year. The Dutchman Dip event began last year to raise money for a young member of the Union community, Kristen Shinebarger, daughter of the Director of Student Services Shelly Shinebarger. Kristen was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma, a form of cancer that targets bones and the soft tissues that surrounds them.
As part of her treatment, Kristen had her right leg amputated below the knee, and now requires a prosthetic. The money raised during last year’s event helped support the ongoing cost of the new prosthetics she requires as she grows.
What makes this event different from many other fundraisers put on by Union students is that the money raised is not given to foundations or charities, but directly to the people at Union who need it to continue to fight their battles with cancer.
The event itself will take place on March 9 in the area behind Reamer Campus Center. Last year, over 200 people made the Dip, and even more contributed their time to help acquire donations from Union students and faculty, as well as family and friends across the country.
Last year, Colleges Against Cancer and Dutchmen Athletics donated over $10,000 to Kristen’s Kause, the charity started to support Kristen and the Shinebarger family. Kaitlyn Suarez ’15 is leading the planning and registration processe for the Dutchman Dip. She believes that the campus will be able to raise more than $10,000 this year, and has added an additional $5,000 to the goal.
In order to achieve this goal, a website has been set up to enable those who want to raise money to create their own pages for their friends and families to use to donate.
The Dip is an opportunity to show how Union students are able to help members of our own community with their struggles with cancer.
Many different people on campus are getting involved by either jumping on March 9, or donating money toward the cause.
Suarez said, “This event is an example of what Union College can do when all parts of the campus come together for a cause.”
The Dutchman Dip this year will continue to help Kristen with the financial difficulties of her battle, but there are two more people who are receiving support from the event as well.
Nate Greenberg ’14 and Justin Lloyd ’16 are two members of our community who are also experiencing the debilitating effects of cancer and its treatments. Lloyd, when asked about his thoughts on the event, said, “I think it is awesome that the community plays such an active role in cancer awareness. It is great to see so many people be active in the fight. Every little thing counts when you’re dealing with something as stressful as cancer at such a young age.”
The Dip will help pay for the many medical expenses that an individual with cancer accumulates, and the money will be split equally among Shinebarger, Greenberg and Lloyd.
For more information about the Dutchmen Dip and how to donate money to the cause, visit www.rally.org/dutchmendip1. The money will go a long way in helping three members of the Union community and their families pay for medical expenses.