Jayde smashes fundraising target for Pancreatic Cancer UK

Some people may have been tearing their hair out during the COVID-19 lockdown – but not Jayde! A tenacious member of TH March’s Personal Insurances Team, Jayde Bassett, decided to “brave the shave” in a bid to raise a target of £1,000 for Pancreatic Cancer UK.

Jayde originally made the pledge when socialising over Zoom with friends “It’s something I have thought about doing for a few years, but I was having some drinks with friends over a Friday night Zoom call when the idea was brought up and it felt like a great time to finally do it. When I told my family about my decision to shave my hair off, they were initially surprised but we were all in total agreement that the cause and the good that the fundraising can do for the charity was much more important than my hair which will grow back… eventually!”

Jayde raised the money in support of her TH March IT Support colleague Jean Keast, a prolific fundraiser and official Devon Rep for the Pancreatic Cancer UK charity. “She works so hard with such passion for the cause” Jayde commented.

The brave shave would see Jayde losing all of her normally long locks. Her original ambitious target was for £1,000 but with some last-minute extra supporters the total is currently at £1,596.  “To reach £1,500 is amazing! It will help fund research towards curing pancreatic cancer which is fantastic”.

Prior to the shave, Jayde had long hair and decided to make the most before committing to the new look “I changed the colour using toners and went pink, then purple and then blue. It may seem like it’s just a case of cutting off your hair, but it is more than that. It affects the way you look at yourself, your confidence, and it’s going to take a long time for my hair to grow back. As a young woman, you look at long hair as a part of someone’s beauty and I think that had I done this a few years ago, I would have really struggled with such a big change in my appearance, but with all the support I have received, it has really made this experience extremely positive”

Jayde took to Facebook Live for her shave, publicly braving the experience in front of friends, family and colleagues. “I wanted to do it live as so many people have supported me and been involved with this journey and being in lockdown meant that I couldn’t go to the hairdressers or hold any fundraising evenings. I was very nervous but over 110 people were watching the video live and it has since had 7,000 views.”

“I wanted to shave my head myself, as I felt that it would be empowering and liberating, and I was right! It was scary cutting it off myself, and I did find myself getting a bit emotional, but it was just such a shock to be holding all of my hair in my hands! Everyone was sending messages during the video and I have had lots of messages and support since, which really helped me through the process.”

After the enthusiastic response on Facebook Live, Jayde described how she feels about her new look. “It’s so strange! When I go outside, I can feel the wind on my scalp and it’s super sensitive to heat etc. I keep going to play with my hair, and then get a bit of a shock when I remember that there isn’t any!”

Jayde thanks everyone involved and summed up the experience “I am very proud to have done this for charity and for such an important cause too, it’s been great to support both a great charity and my colleague.”

The Just Giving link is still active for any further donations: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jaydebassett.

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