Seven Sechelt Hospital nurses and doctors went under the razor on July 29 to raise money to support youth on the Sunshine Coast.
“We’re shaving our heads COVID-style,” said organizer Brenda Rowe, a registered nurse at the hospital and District of Sechelt councillor.
It was “COVID-style” because the event was small, private and didn’t raise additional money through auction or refreshment sales as initially intended, to stay in line with public health restrictions.
Planning began last December when Rowe’s colleague Timothy Vigneux suggested the fundraiser. Since then other health-care professionals joined in.
Despite its smaller size, much hair was shorn, including Rowe’s own shoulder-length locks. “My hair grows really fast, so I’m not super concerned about it,” she said, minutes before taking a seat next to a wash basin and electric razor at the Seaside Centre in Sechelt.
Much money was raised, too. The organizers surpassed their $10,000 goal, bringing in $11,240.
That included a $1,000 donation from Dr. Brian Nelson with the caveat that the doctors and nurses perform a rendition of Tiptoe Through the Tulips by Tiny Tim, which they did, with backing guitar by soon-to-be-bald Sunshine Coast COVID Physician Task Force member Dr. Daren Spithoff.
The money will be used for youth and special services programing, run through Sunshine Coast Community Services Society (SCCSS). The programs support hundreds of young people between the ages of 12 and 24 by connecting them to local resources that focus on risk reduction, and by providing support to children and youth with development and physical challenges, according to the SCCS website.
“SCCSS is so grateful for the support of the Sechelt Hospital staff and their dedication to youth mental health on the Sunshine Coast,” said service lead Jen Davey. “This generous donation will support us in continuing to ensure the safety and health of youth.”
This is the second time Rowe has gone bald. The first was in 2008, in support of a friend undergoing chemotherapy.
“The feeling of shaving your head is very liberating,” she said moments after the deed was done. “It’s bizarre, but I honestly think everybody should do it once.”
Hair was donated to Wigs for Kids BC.