02 June 2020
At just 12 years old, Ava McCann is choosing to make a change in the world by ‘rocking the chop’ for Cancer Council’s Ponytail Project in support of South Australians impacted by cancer.
The fundraiser empowers girls, and guys, to make a change in the world by chopping off their ponytails to raise funds and awareness for Cancer Council SA.
For Ava, who has been growing her hair for the past 16 months, the decision to ‘rock the chop’ and donate her hair was made easier knowing it was for a good cause.
“I was going to chop my hair off and I got to thinking that there was a chance it could go to a good cause, that someone else might be able to use it,” she says.
“I have had several family members and family friends who have had cancer, so I decided to raise funds for Cancer Council SA.
“It’s a good cause and gives me a reason to chop off my hair. I have been wanting to cut it, but doing it for a cause made it an easier decision.”
The support Ava has received from family and friends has been overwhelming, and in just the first week of signing up to Ponytail Project, Ava raised an incredible $876. Funds that will go a long way in supporting South Australians impacted by cancer.
“I’m really grateful for all the people who have already donated, it happened pretty quickly. I have a few friends who are thinking about joining me and my grandma is spruiking it to all her friends too,” Ava says.
“I’m hoping that once Coronavirus (COVID-19) settles down, our hairdresser reopens and I am able to set an actual date, maybe a few more people might donate.
“I’d love to just raise as much as possible—I want to make a difference.”
Ava’s mum, Leah, is incredibly proud of her daughter’s decision to ‘rock the chop’ as part of Cancer Council’s Ponytail Project as well as donate the hair to those in need.
“I think she is amazingly brave to be cutting off so much hair and impressed that she’s turning a simple haircut into something that will benefit others,” Leah says.
“As a family, we have lost several people, and have family friends fighting the fight right now. We also have survivors who we are so grateful to still have with us. And we know we are not alone in that journey.
“Raising money for a cause that both supports people through the hard times and funds research to improve outcomes and find effective treatments for people living with cancer is something quite personal to us.
“Her father and I are incredibly proud that Ava is passionate about doing good things in this world and we’re excited to see what she can do with her fundraising.”
While social distancing restrictions and self-isolation is preventing Ava from committing to a chop date, she says she is making the most of the situation and doing what she can.
“Most of the donations in support of my chop have come through from social media,” Ava explains.
“We are hoping that once I go back to school, we may be able to advertise it there too and maybe get some more people involved.
“I’d love to see more people involved in Ponytail Project because the more people that do it, the more wigs that can be made for people who need them and the more money that can be raised to go to research and supporting people with cancer.
“I hope I can have people involved on the day and make some fun out of the whole experience.”
To find out more about Ponytail Project, register to ‘rock the chop’, or view the leaderboard visit www.ponytailproject.com.au
For more information about making hair donations, visit https://www.ponytailproject.com.au/supporting-salons/sustainable-salons.