At just 11 years old, Skye Dewar has experienced the impact of cancer in her family not just once but twice. When she was only three months old, she lost her Pa to leukemia, and when she was six, her Grandfather was diagnosed with bowel cancer.
In a show of support for a cancer free future, Skye took the courageous step of cutting and donating her hair, which she had grown for five years, while also raising funds for Cancer Council NSW.
Mum Tanya says Skye was inspired by a family friend who had lost her hair during breast cancer treatment.
“I said to Skye, rather than just cut her hair and let it go to waste, there are people who could really do with wigs, who are going through the chemo, and they’re going through all this trauma. We could also raise money in the process, and she was really open to it.”
Skye had her locks cut at a sustainable salon that donates hair to charities and local wig makers. The hair is used to create wigs for those who have cancer or other medically induced hair loss conditions.
“She was really nervous before the event,” Tanya says. “Once the process was over, she was relieved and happy that she was able to support a great cause.”
Tanya says they chose to fundraise for Cancer Council NSW because it had supported the family friend with breast cancer, and it was a cause close to the family’s hearts.
Skye’s initial fundraising goal was $500, but thanks to the generosity of friends, family and her school, she ended up raising nearly $1200 in six weeks.
“We were just blown away by the support of people and everyone getting behind her and the story: someone so young is willing to donate her hair and raise money for such a fantastic cause,” Tanya says.
“I’m so incredibly proud of her to jump at the opportunity to cut her hair and put her story out there for hundreds of people to see.”
Having seen the positive reception to Skye’s fundraiser, Tanya hopes it will inspire others to do the same.
“This is the first fundraising experience that we’ve ever had, and we put ourselves out there for a really good cause,” she says.
“We weren’t sure what the reaction would be. We were aiming for $500, and we more than doubled that.
“For anyone thinking of doing a fundraiser or raising money, think of the cause – it’s so worthwhile. I think you’ll find that generally, people are more than willing to jump on board and support such a good cause.”