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Schoolgirl's head shave to raise money for Airplay

Sixteen-year-old Alice Cunningham is raising money for our Airplay programme at RAF Lossiemouth by shaving off her hair. She'll also be donating her hair to a charity that makes wigs for children with cancer. In this guest blog, Alice and her mum Judith tell us more.

I live in Elgin with my mum, my dad and my sisters Megan and Charlotte. My dad has served in the RAF for nearly 16 years. Before he joined the RAF, Dad served with the RAF Auxiliaries at No.2 City of Edinburgh MHU, now 603Sqn RauxAF. Earlier this year he was promoted to Sgt and works with 51Sqn RAF Regt, on the engineering flight.

Alice CunninghamDad is currently serving in Afghanistan. He left mid-October and should be home by May.

I was born with unilateral hearing loss and I wear a hearing aid. I am currently in S5 at Elgin Academy.

I joined Airplay at RAF Lossiemouth two and a half years ago and I really enjoy it. I've also volunteered at a few of the Airplay clubs and on trips; I'm working towards my volunteer award plus I'm currently doing the Bronze Duke of Edinburgh Award.

I'm planning to do my head shave in January. I wanted to raise money for Airplay as a way of thanking them for all that they do. I've had lots of support from people and I can't wait to get my fundraising off the ground. 

I'll be donating my hair to the Little Princess Trust so that children with cancer will be able to benefit from my head shave too. Usually it costs the charity about £350 for one wig. If my hair meets the criteria, it will be sent to the factory and the Trust will receive a large number of children's wigs in return, which can be used free of charge. 

My mum and my sisters will be supporting me on the night of my challenge. I've asked Mum to shave my head as I trust her. I don't know if my dad will be home on R'n'R to watch my head shave challenge, but even if he's not there, I know that he'll be thinking of me.

Alice's mum on her daughter's head shave 

When Alice first told me she was planning to shave off her hair I was quite shocked but I was more than happy to give her my full support. We're all incredibly proud of Alice. She has had to overcome quite a few challenges in her life, having been affected by valproate syndrome and hearing loss. Academically she has surpassed all of our expectations and nothing appears to be impossible for her now. She has matured into an incredibly caring and thoughtful young person. She is just amazing.

By Alice and Judith Cunningham

To sponsor Alice's fundraising challenge, please visit her JustGiving page.

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