Cutting their hair for cancer

June 27, 2017 by Michelle Favero
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For the second year in a row, a group of students at Emanuel School gathered to cut at least 20cm of their hair to help beat cancer.

Front: Megan Finn – Year 9 Jessica Beutum – Year 9
Isabella Reichel – Year 9
Tara Israel – Year 8
Jayda Abrahams – Year 8
Lola Phillips – Year 10
Isabella Kidman – Year 12
Yael Grunseit – Year 12

The students signed up for Cancer Council NSW’s Do It For Cancer program in order to raise money for vital research, prevention programs and support for those affected by cancer. The funds raised ($10,000 in 2016 and an additional $6,000 this year) will also be partly donated to an Israeli charity, Zichron Manachem, which transforms the hair into wigs for women who have lost their own hair due to chemotherapy.

Isabella Kidman, the Year 12 student who was the driver behind the project, has been personally affected by cancer, making the experience even more powerful. “In October of 2015, my Mum was diagnosed with breast cancer. She had to undergo months of chemotherapy and radiation and in the process, lost all of her hair. I saw the effects cancer had on her and my family and was determined to make a difference.

“Following my Mum’s official step into remission, my aunty, her sister, was diagnosed with blood cancer. Having been so affected by the horrendous disease, I think it is imperative that we all support organisations such as Cancer Council NSW in order to find a cure. I think my family is lucky – my Mum and Aunty are still with us. However, cancer has a life-changing impact on families all over Australia and we should do whatever we can to help eradicate the disease,” said Isabella.

Anne Hastings, the Principal of Emanuel School was very supportive of the girls’ efforts. “We are all so proud of the Year 12 girls who participated. Hair is an integral part of a person’s identity. By cutting their hair, the eight girls raised money for a very worthy charity and were physically showing support for women who have lost their hair to chemotherapy. This shows great courage and empathy and I commend them for their action.”

Costeen Sekhas, Community Engagement Manager at Cancer Council NSW said: “Cancer Council NSW’s Do It For Cancer program supports individuals and groups to fundraise in any way they like. We are so appreciative of Isabella and the Emanuel School students’ commitment to their fundraising and willingness to do what they can to help beat cancer.”

To make a tax deductible donation to the Emanuel School collection for Cancer Council NSW, please visit

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