Adelaide-local Andreanna Belperio raised an incredible $78,000 by shaving her head for the National Breast Cancer Foundation (NBCF).
Inspired by her late mother-in-law, Rose, who passed away from breast cancer, Andreanna originally set out to achieve $30, 000. Soon into her fundraising event, however, it became clear she’d go above and beyond that target.
The hairdresser organised a live auction where the highest bidder would get the chance to cut off her hair (all 66cm in length!) and then shave her head. After a nerve-racking auction, her father-in-law, brother-in-law and the Belperio family bid a generous $15,000 for the honour.
Although Andreanna knew she wanted to raise funds for breast cancer research, it was only after she saw Rose lose her hair from chemotherapy that she decided to sign up to be a Zero Hero.
“I always wanted to do a fundraiser for Rose. She hated losing her hair through chemo but she didn’t have a choice – I did, which was why I chose to shave my head,” says Andreanna.
Rose was diagnosed with breast cancer five-and-half years ago.
“She found a lump in her breast, got tested and was operated on almost immediately,” says Andreanna.
“Afterwards she had chemotherapy and radiotherapy, but I never really knew her without cancer. She passed away after the cancer spread to her liver.”
Andreanna says Rose was like a “second mum” to her from the moment she began dating her son, Samuel, who she has since married.
“Rose would have been so honoured and grateful if she saw this. Shaving my head was so worth it for the $78,000 raised,” she says.
“She was loved by more people than anyone could ever imagine, that’s why we raised so much. It was all for her.”
She added: “Breast cancer is never going to be easy for anyone to go through but hopefully with the money raised, new treatments will be discovered and it will make a difference.”
Are you feeling inspired by Andreanna’s story? Sign up to become a Zero Hero, here.