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Victoria Kelsch waits for her turn to have her head shaved during a cancer fundraiser at Rutland Senior Friday. (Photo: Wayne Moore - Castanet)
Victoria Kelsch waits for her turn to have her head shaved during a cancer fundraiser at Rutland Senior Friday. (Photo: Wayne Moore - Castanet)

RSS students lose hair for cancer

by - Story: 54971


Students at Rutland Senior Secondary were getting lessons in more than math and English Friday.

Several hundred students packed into the school gymnasium as four bands performed while more than a dozen students lost their hair in the name of cancer research.

Last year, students raised about $10,000 for cancer research. Event organizer Indy Sahota hoped Friday's fundraiser would top that.

As of noon Friday, more than $6,000 had been raised.

All proceeds stayed in Kelowna for palliative care in the name of B.C. Children's Hospital.

"We are here to raise money but also to raise awareness," says Sahota.

"A lot of people don't know why we do this and it is for cancer research. A lot of people just decide that cancer doesn't really affect them but once it hits close enough, you really realize it."

Sahota says his cousin recently passed away from cancer.

"Whether it hits me or not it doesn't really make a difference because I know that people need help and that's what I'm here for. I'm here because I like being in front of people and I know that people need it."

While some on hand had their heads shaved for no other reason than to help, others, like Victoria Kelsch had very personal reasons.

"I'm doing it for all the girls that don't have the choice. I grew up with a girl named Kelsey and she's had brain cancer her whole life," says Kelsch.

"She is recovering from her fourth brain surgery and she just kind of motivated me and told me she wished she had hair like me because I have been so privileged with it. I decided why not give it up."

Kelsch says her hair will be made into a wig which will go to a little girl who never had the choice.

The grade 12 student, who is a contestant in the Lady of the Lake pageant, is giving up more than just her hair.

"One dress shop kind of put me down a little bit and said I would look funny in a bridal gown but they have apologized and said they didn't mean it but it still hurt my feelings."

She says everyone with Lady of the Lake has been very supportive of what she is doing and why she is doing it.

"It's not really a beauty contest it's more about being a lady and giving back to the community and that's what I am doing."

Coryll-Rae Dobie says she also got involved to help other kids.

"I feel really sorry for the kids that have to go bald and their hair doesn't grow back. They don't have the luxury like we do," says Dobie.

"I just wanted to give something to them."

Dobie says she personally has not been touched by cancer, but says she did it out of the kindness of her heart.

She says she would do it again in a heartbeat.

"I just wish my hair had been a little longer."


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