HIGH Wycombe resident Ilona Hansen accepted the hairy challenge of getting sponsored to shave and colour her hair to help people with blood cancer this month.
Ms Hansen said she was inspired to take part after a family member was diagnosed with leukaemia.
“My five-year-old niece has just been diagnosed with leukaemia and I planned to shave my head when she loses her hair when she undergoes chemotherapy so I thought I might at least help others at the same time,” she said.
“I have seen firsthand how traumatic a diagnosis can be for families, and what the Leukaemia Foundation does to help those affected is fantastic.
“Participating in the World’s Greatest Shave helps give Aussie families facing blood cancer the emotional and practical support they need and also helps fund vital research so more people can survive blood cancers like lymphoma, leukaemia and myeloma.
“Blood cancer is the third most common cause of cancer death in Australia, claiming more lives than breast cancer or melanoma. And every day, another 35 people will be diagnosed.
“No matter how much people can give, it’s an extraordinary way to make a difference.”
From small beginnings in 1998, the World’s Greatest Shave is now the Leukaemia Foundation’s most important fundraiser, providing a fun way to lessen the impact of blood cancer in our community.
Leukaemia Foundation WA general manager Andrew York said the organisation was the only national not-for-profit organisation dedicated to the care and cure of patients and families living with blood disorders.
“As the Leukaemia Foundation receives no ongoing government funding, we rely on the generosity of the community and events like The World’s Greatest Shave,” he said.
“Through this, we are able to invest millions of dollars in research to develop better treatments and cures and we are able to provide free services to support patients and their families, including transport and accommodation.”