Lara James braved the shave at World's Greatest Shave at Stockland Gladstone.
Lara James braved the shave at World's Greatest Shave at Stockland Gladstone. Megan McEwan

Teen gives up her hair to help cancer sufferers

LARA James' mum battled cervical cancer on and off for 13 years. For that reason the 17-year-old jumped at the chance to participate in the Leukaemia Foundation's World's Greatest Shave.

"Mum's my best friend," Lara said.

Far from being worried, the brave teenager said it "tickled" to have her head shaved.

"I think about all the girls and ladies who don't have a choice. It's hair, it grows back," she said.

Leukaemia Foundation regional events co-ordinator for Wide Bay Capricornia Sue-Ellen Pitt said the response to the event, held from March 14-17, had been fantastic.

It was a busy day at Stockland Gladstone on Saturday where she said women, men and kids all got behind the cause by shaving or colouring their hair.

"We've had some very brave people," Ms Pitt said. "A lot of the people involved know someone and they know what we do."

She said the Leukaemia Foundation was aiming to have 600 people register either individually or in teams in the region and to raise $450,000.

Ms Pitt said that kind of money could make a huge difference to the people they helped.

"Last year for Central Queensland we provided 4900 nights of accommodation. For Gladstone specifically it was 860.

World's Greatest Shave:

  • WGS is the Leukaemia Foundation's biggest annual fundraiser.
  • It was first held in 1999 when it raised $1.2 million in Queensland.
  • In 2012 it generated a record of more than $5.1 million across the state with 40,000 Queenslanders joining in.