When Mitch Gardner’s mum, Narelle, was diagnosed with breast cancer for the second time last October, Mitch decided to lop off his locks to raise money for breast cancer research.
For Mitch, who has had a ‘man bun’ for seven years, the decision to shave his head was an easy one. “My hair has always been quite important to me being a young male, so being able to shave my head in front of my family and friends would not only be a good way to bring everyone together, but show mum that we are not alone in this and that we have hundreds of people who are there for her,” says the Zero Hero.
Mitch had two separate events for the occasion. The first was a 42-kilometre marathon row held across five F45 fitness studios where members from each class could donate or join in for the team. At the second event, Mitch sold raffle tickets, raised money through donations boxes, and of course, shaved his head for breast cancer.
Thanks to the generosity of the community, Mitch more than doubled his original target of $10, 000 and raised a whopping $21, 988.
“Having the shave take place in a public place, where people can sit, have a drink, eat and donate at the same time was a great idea,” he said about increasing awareness of the event. “Social media awareness was a huge impact for us, sharing our story to all of our friends and family, our workplace, and having others share our story to their friends and family made a massive difference.”
Mitch hopes that by donating to research, people experiencing breast cancer – like his mum – will have more effective treatment outcomes in the future.
“Breast cancer affects so many families and the money going towards the research to completely eradicate breast cancer or even prolong someone’s life – such as my beautiful mother’s – is too important to not care about,” says Mitch.
“If the money we have raised can help another family like mine, or even fund research for more treatment, then I’ll be happy.”
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