A super fundraising campaign to open a ‘Haven of Support’ centre in Tipperary town in unison with The Girls Club in Cork accumulated in an entertaining fundraiser, ‘Be Bald Be Bold’ in Lowry’s bar recently.
Spearheaded by Jennifer Jones, Tipperary town, who has undergone cancer treatment, the campaign included the sale of the Bald Hats in local shops and pubs for €5 and coffee mornings run by the Tipperary Garda Station, La Candela Restaurant and Tipp Mid-West Radio Presenter Larry Breen shaving his head at their coffee morning.
“The Be Bald Be Bold” is about having solidarity for someone close to you who may have lost their own hair through cancer, so by wearing the bald cap you may understand for even a minute what it would be like to loose your hair,” explained Jennifer.
The fundraising night held in Tony Lowry Bar on Friday, October 18, included Jennifer’s dad Patrick, her husband Mikey and her uncle John Compton having their heads shaved by Sinead O’Dwyer. Other men opted for the more painful route of waxing their chest and legs by the experienced Mary Larkin including: JJ Fogarty, Tony Lowry, Raymond Lonergan and Brian Nugent.
“After my head was shaved I felt very vulnerable and had the feeling that something was missing,” said Patrick, Jennifer’s father.
The fundraiser had an international twist with members of Jennifer’s family in Germany, Scotland and America wearing the Bald Hats in support of the cause. “My brother David and his work mates all wore the Bald Hats on a building site in Darwin Australia. My cousin Louise Crowe wore them with her friends and my mam’s sister, Ann Hally and her family and cousins got together in Philadelphia in America,” said Jennifer.
The Girls Club, Cork is a voluntary cancer support group for women who have or have had cancer and their carers, families and friends. Jennifer wants to set up a similar, ‘Haven of Support’ in Tipperary Town and spoke about the loneliness and isolation that one can experience with cancer and that she sees a huge need for a Cancer Support Centre in Tipperary Town.
“If we get the right premises at a nominal charge hopefully we will make this dream of mine come true. I have seen personally what the Girls Club in Cork has done for my family and me and we want to bring this to Tipp. Why not? When you are diagnosed with cancer, where do you go to talk to someone who has been through it and can support you and empathise with you? Somewhere local is key, where people don’t have to travel a long journey.”
€6,490 has been raised so far for The Girls Club with €2,605 euro going towards the Haven of Support project in Tipperary. Donations are still coming in.“Friday night for me was so overwhelming with love from everybody. The people of Tipperary came out in force to support such a worthy cause. I will be forever grateful saidJennifer.