Employee Appreciation Day: One Mission's Kids with Cancer Buzz-Off
In honor of Employee Appreciation Day tomorrow, March 1, Eze Castle Integration sat down with Dave Wilcox, Service Director- Northeast Region, of Eze Castle Integration for an interview on his experience with One Mission’s Kids with Cancer Buzz-Off
Dave Wilcox has been involved with the One Mission Kids with Cancer Buzz-Off since 2013 so we sat down with him to get an insight on his experience. The money One Mission raises goes exclusively to their 40+ programs and services that are offered at their three partner hospitals; Boston Children’s Hospital, The Jimmy Fund Clinic at Dana-Farber, and Hasbro Children’s Hospital. The one mission of One Mission is to do whatever it takes to get kids through cancer, and they accomplish this by focusing on the day-to-day needs of patients and families that people and charities often overlook as non-essential. One Mission feels very strongly, however, that it’s the little things that get kids and families through the darkest days of their lives. Programs such as birthday parties, decorated hospital rooms, yoga, catered meals, and parking passes are exactly the “small” things that turn a horrible, stressful day into one with smiles and memories. One Mission funds no cancer research at all.
ECI: Dave is our Service Director – Northeast Region and has been with ECI for 5 ½ years. Prior to joining ECI, he spent six years in account management for Fidelity Investments. Dave and his wife Melanie have an almost 4-year-old son, Ulysses, who loves terrorizing the family dog, McCoy. Outside of family and work, Dave is a big sports fan and low handicap golfer playing in Massachusetts & New England Amateur tournaments yearly. Dave and his family love to travel and dedicate time to helping others.
ECI: Dave, how did you originally get involved with the One Mission Kids with Cancer Buzz-Off?
Dave: I was driving down Storrow Drive on a nice Spring day, and I heard a commercial on the radio for the upcoming 4th annual Buzz Off for Kids with Cancer. I thought about what it must be like for a child, toddler or infant to have to fight cancer. Like, what did that young innocent human being do to deserve this? I then thought about what it must be like to be a parent and having to see your child fight cancer. These thoughts to me were heartbreaking, so I immediately registered when I got home.
ECI: The 4th annual Buzz Off was in 2013. Have you participated since then?
Dave: Yes! I’ve shaved my head every June since 2013. This year will be my 7th consecutive year being a ‘buzzee’.
ECI: That’s amazing. So, what about the Buzz-Off keeps you coming back?
Dave:: Oh boy, I can write a novel because there’s so many reasons why. Thinking back to 2013, I didn’t’ know what to expect when arriving at Gillette Stadium. I was overwhelmed with the stories I heard, especially one little girl who was shaving her head with her dad. The emcee asked the little girl why she was ‘going bald’, and she said she beat cancer and knows what it was like to fight that battle. So, she wanted to show her support for other kids still fighting. Just recalling that story makes my eyes water up. There’s so much love and support at the One Mission, that I was hooked right from the beginning.
ECI: Dave, can you tell us a little more about what the One Mission does?
Dave: Their motto is to do whatever it takes to get kids through cancer. They have programs like decorating a child’s hospital room, hosting art therapy and music therapy events, and special activities like jewelry making. All of these programs help children feel like regular kids again and take their minds off of cancer while in the hospital. The One Mission also provides financial relief for families to help ease the financial burden of pediatric cancer so families can focus on helping children fight cancer. None of the money goes to Cancer Research, which I appreciate as there’s already so many wonderful charities out there that fund cancer research. The One Mission is all about helping the children and families get through this battle and journey, which for me is equally important.
ECI: I heard you became an MVP last year? How did that happen?
Dave: Each year I’ve raised more and more money, and last year I crossed the $3,500 threshold. If any individual raises $3,500 or more, they get to attend a dinner with Rob Gronkowski. Last year we not only crossed the $3,500 mark for the first time, we crushed it. We raised over $6,000 last year, and my wife and I got to meet Gronk. He’s such a genuinely nice guy and extremely active with the One Mission.
ECI: Wow, over $6,000. What’s your goal this year?
Dave: We don’t have a specific dollar amount in mind, but it just has to be more than last year! I’m proud to say that with the support of my incredible wife (Melanie), our friends, family, and my extended family at ECI, we’ve raised over $10,000 since I began my journey supporting the One Mission.
ECI: That’s truly amazing. Before we go, are there any other charities you support?
Dave: Yes, there actually are. Over the years, I’ve felt the need to become more charitable and ‘do the right thing’ as my parents would say. We currently support the Massachusetts Military Family Relief Fund, Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, Animal Rescue League, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Springfield Rescue Mission, The First Tee of Massachusetts, Best Buddies, among others as well.
ECI: Wow, Dave that’s a lot. Thank you for your time and all that you do for the One Mission and the other charities. We’re proud of your contributions to others and ECI. We look forward to seeing pictures from this year’s Buzz-Off!
Dave: Thank you for your time, and all the support from the ECI Family.
You can learn more about the One Mission by visiting their webpage at https://buzzforkids.org/