Shoppers join Leigh for shaving journey

Emily AceSouth Western Times

Leigh Smithies and her team #travelswithaidan added more than $7000 to the State’s total of $1.29 million raised for the Leukaemia Foundation by getting the chop at the Bunbury Forum Shopping Centre on Saturday.

Mrs Smithies’ team consisted of her parents, Bruce and Alison Hawkes, sister Sara Knaus – who donated her ponytail to make a wig for cancer patients – and boss Chris Gray – who received a close shave on his head and beard – all in the name of Mrs Smithies’ late son, Aidan.

Hairdressers Heidi Bilston, from Salon Express, and Emily Braeckmans, from Brush Hair, donated their time to shave Bruce Hawkes, Leigh Smithies and Alison Hawkes hair for the World's Greatest Shave, as the Leukaemia Foundation’s state general manager Peta Greening watched on.
Camera IconHairdressers Heidi Bilston, from Salon Express, and Emily Braeckmans, from Brush Hair, donated their time to shave Bruce Hawkes, Leigh Smithies and Alison Hawkes hair for the World's Greatest Shave, as the Leukaemia Foundation’s state general manager Peta Greening watched on. Credit: Emily Ace / South Western Times

On the day of the event, an extra $700 was raised through shopper donations and visitors opting to have their hair coloured for the cause. The hair continued to fall as three individual campaigners also joined in.

Mrs Smithies said the event garnered plenty of attention for the “fantastic cause” and she thanked Leo’s Mens Hairdresser, Salon Express and Brush Hair for donating their time.

Tracey Gruter and Katisse Davis get their hair coloured for the cause.
Camera IconTracey Gruter and Katisse Davis get their hair coloured for the cause.

“I didn’t have to ask twice, they were instantly on board and everyone really got behind the cause,” she said.

“We signed up to The Sustainable Salon, so all of the hair clippings get returned and recycled into compost and then the ponytails and longer pieces went back to be donated for a wig.

Leigh’s husband Regan Smithies, who continues to battle Leukaemia, with Kaiden Old.
Camera IconLeigh’s husband Regan Smithies, who continues to battle Leukaemia, with Kaiden Old.

“Lots of people dropped their spare change in and every little bit goes towards that giant total – I saw that the foundation is over the $11 million mark Nationwide so far for this year’s shave which is massive as well.

“It was all well worth it.”

Tracey Gruter and Katisse Davis show off their brightly coloured hair as they pose with Leigh Smithies (centre).
Camera IconTracey Gruter and Katisse Davis show off their brightly coloured hair as they pose with Leigh Smithies (centre).
Leigh Smithies and Chris Gray before the shave.
Camera IconLeigh Smithies and Chris Gray before the shave.

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