An Armagh man who has grown his hair for two years will shave it all off for later this month in aid of The Little Princess Trust.
On July 22, Simon McCoy will brave the shave and donate his golden locks to the charity, which provides real hair wigs to boys and girls across the UK and Ireland who have lost their own to cancer.
The 23-year-old DCU masters student will also be raising money for the NI Children’s Hospice, which provide care for children with life threatening/limiting illnesses.
Simon told Armagh I the reasons behind the appearance change.
“I was going into the final year of my degree and I had always considered growing it long and I thought that it would be a good opportunity to do it when I was still studying,” he said.
“I had seen others who had donated their hair to The Little Princess Trust and I know people who have benefitted from the wigs they provide to children suffering from illnesses and it means a lot to the families easing the pain of hair loss.”
He added: “I think we all know people who have availed of the Children’s Hospice’s brilliant service over the years and the support given at incredibly difficult times is invaluable for families providing great relief to those caring for the children and the kids themselves.”
Simon’s friends and family weren’t too keen on the idea of growing the mane of hair – if only aesthetically.
“People weren’t too keen mainly during the first year, myself included,” he admitted.
“You go through an awful period that it just looks like a mop on your head that isn’t long or short! Playing football is a bit of a nightmare with it as well so I’ve blamed that for all the bad performances I’ve had in the last two years.
“It’s been grand though, my roommates in Dublin, Jack McCarron and Shane Carey were always supportive when I said I was going to grow it long and my parents made no comment either way as much as they may have wanted to shave it off in the middle of the night! I just figured it was something small I could do to support a good cause.”
Simon’s noble cause has garnered a bit of reaction on social media, with donations flying in.
“It has been crazy,” said Simon. “The generosity of people so far has been unbelievable. I shared the post last night (Wednesday) and already £412 has been raised.
“I want to thank those who have donated already and those who will do so over the next couple of weeks before I shave it off on July 22. Robert Giffney from Him Barbershop in Dublin has kindly offered up his time to cut it although plenty others have wanted to shave it over the past two years!
“The Children’s hospice rely on donations to operate and I can’t thank people enough for the support they’ve given already between donating and sharing the post to help raise more awareness to increase donations to the hospice.”
If you would like to donate to help support them you can do so at www.justgiving.com/
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