To baldly go ...
A charity head shave for the St Baldrick’s Foundation childhood cancer charity raised more than double its target yesterday.
The total stood at more than $300,000 last night as the last of four head-shaving events kicked off at Hamilton’s Docksider Pub and Restaurant.
Vittoria Canale, one of the organisers, said: “We are at over $300,000 for this year’s event. The goal was $150,000.”
She added that the fundraising efforts of Team Brennan — in honour of five-year-old Brennan Watkins who is battling a rare form of leukaemia — had “certainly contributed”.
Denise Watkins, Brennan’s mother, said the team of 24 had raised a total of $185,000 as of yesterday.
Ms Watkins, said having her own head shaved was a “big moment”.
But she added: “How could I not do this, if I could raise $110,000 for charity?”
Ms Watkins added that her son is “doing amazing” and had completed 23 out of 25 months of chemotherapy.
She said many more were inspired to take part in the fundraiser by her son’s story.
Alessandra Hughes, 9, was one of them. She decided to take part after she heard Ms Watkins speak at her school.
She opted for a buzz cut at the Saltus Grammar School event yesterday morning.
Alessandra was also inspired by a friend, who took part last year. She added: “It looked fun and the feeling was really nice.”
Alessandra was at Docksider to support her father, Nick Hughes.
Mr Hughes teamed up with Matthew Westerman to raise funds for the cause. Both were inspired by Greg Hafit, who shaved his head last year.
Mr Hughes, an underwriter at PartnerRe and a colleague of Mr Hafit’s, said: “My father has battled with cancer over the last two years. This event brings the cancer cause to light and it’s great to help out where we can.”
Mr Westerman added: “My grandfather died of cancer, so it’s always been close to my heart.”
The pair followed Mr Hafit, who dyed his hair purple for the event last year and coloured their crops white and blue.
Bermuda High School students Maggie Brough and Katherine Haworth, both 7, opted to cut their hair and donate it to wig charity Locks of Love.
Maggie said: “I didn’t want any more people to have cancer and I want people to have long lives.” She added: “At first I felt terrified. It feels nice now.”
Katherine said: “It feels good. I wanted to donate my hair to people who don’t have any hair now.”
A total of 28 people, aged from 6 to over 50, took part in the Docksider’s event.
Other events took place at Saltus, Mount Saint Agnes Academy and Harrington Sound Primary School.