CENTERVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – Community members laced up their running sneakers and came out to Centerville Saturday for a birthday party.

Each year for their son’s birthday, The Carroll family holds a 5K to raise awareness of a rare genetic disorder.

Alex Carroll is celebrating his 7th birthday this week.

“It’s kind of nice to do something for a good cause and still celebrate him,” Alex’s mom Julie Carroll said.

Alex was born with a rare genetic disorder called Ectodermal Dysplasia.

“He has a subtype that is actually even more rare,” Julie Carroll said.

With Alex’s disorder, he can’t sweat, but that didn’t stop him from playing and running at his birthday celebration.

This is the fourth year for the Alex’s Super Smiles 5K, which took place Saturday at Stubbs Park. Money raised from the race goes to support the National Foundation for Ectodermal Dysplasia (NFED).

“There are children that need dentures as early, even sometimes, as age three,” Julie Carroll said. “That is not covered by insurance. There are kids that have no hair. They need wigs, surgeries, medical, doctors appointments.”

Julie Carroll thanked everyone who participated for supporting NFED, which helped her family connect with resources and navigate through Alex’s diagnosis.

“It makes me emotional sometimes just because, you know, this is one of those things where it’s for your child,” Julie Carrol said. “Everybody has been so supportive. People that travel from out of state. And so it’s it’s amazing.”

Each year, Alex and his family set out to raise $5,000 with this 5K. This year, with the help of the community, they were able to raise nearly $7,000.

To learn more about the NFED, click here.