A COURAGEOUS student has had her locks lopped off for charity in aid of a cause close to her heart.
Carmel RC College pupil Rhian Warner, 14, braved the clippers to raise funds for Cancer Research UK in memory of her mum who died from oral cancer in 2008.
More than 600 staff and students watched Rhian have her head shaved inside the school's John Caden Hall, by ex-Darlington College hairdressing tutors Suzanne Wilson and Lynne Gallacher.
“Both Suzanne and myself used to work with Rhian’s dad Phil at Darlington College so we were only to happy to help when he rang and told us what Rhian was planning to do,” said Lynne.
“She is such a brave girl and what she is doing to help raise money for cancer research is remarkable – I know that her mum would have been exceptionally proud of her.”
With more than £300 collected to date, surpassing Rhian’s original target of £50, Carmel students are hoping to increase the figure with bucket donations throughout the week.
“It’s absolutely awesome the amount of support I’ve had from friends and teachers here at Carmel,” said Rhian.
“I wanted to do something in memory of my mum and the idea of a sponsored head shave just popped into my head.
“My dad was fine with it and it feels so good to have raised so much money for such a good cause.”
Rhian is also donating her shaved hair to The Little Princess Trust, a charity that provides real-hair wigs for children across the UK who have lost their own hair through cancer treatment.
Head of year at Carmel College Ruth Frank said: “The whole school has been behind Rhian in her fundraising efforts.
“Her actions really sum up the community spirit here at Carmel and are a wonderful way to pay tribute to the memory of her mum.”
School friend Erin Kindred, 15, added: “We are all really proud of Rhian - she has wanted to do this for so long.
“She really loved her hair so it was a big decision for her but she knew that we were all here to support her.”
To donate to Rhian’s fundraising page visit: justgiving.com/Rhian-Warner-Head-Shave.