Charity salutes St Baldrick’s ‘brave souls’
A Bermuda charity yesterday thanked the “brave souls” who will raise cash for the fight against cancer.
Dozens of people will take part in a sponsored heads shave at the Docksider bar on Front Street as part of the global St Baldrick's fundraising event on Friday.
The money will support child cancer research in the United States, as well as campaign and educational efforts in Bermuda.
The Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre, which teams up with the St Baldrick's Foundation to organise the event on the island, will use some of the funds for its SunSmart cancer prevention programme.
Deborah Titterton Narraway, the chief marketing officer of the BCHC, said: “We could not do this without the brave souls who step up to be shavees. The majority of Bermuda's shavees are young people.
“Cancer is a disease beyond most young people's comprehension, but they can recognise and relate to other children suffering, and it is their innate response to want to help.”
Ms Titterton Narraway said her two children had both taken part in St Baldrick's Day.
She said: “For us, as a family, there were many lessons. People can be cruel.
“The children would get asked if they were sick, and when they responded no, they were often teased or harassed about why they went bald.
“These are the moments where children shine and through their tears would comment that, being healthy, they only had to live with the bald head for a moment in time, but it was worth it if they could help a child with cancer know that they were not alone.
“The act of shaving is empowering for the shavee and powerful in the message they are giving.”
Children from Bermuda are treated in the US when diagnosed with cancer. Ms Titterton Narraway said: “The funds raised by Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre for SBF in connection with the events will be utilised to prevent better and treat childhood cancers.”
A total of 1,500 people have raised more than $7 million by having their heads shaved since Bermuda held its first St Baldrick's event in 2002.
Ms Titterton Narraway said: “The SBF events continue to be successful in Bermuda because of the volunteers that step up to organise the events.
“These dedicated individuals give countless hours of time and talent to bring St Baldrick's events to their communities.”