Most of us might have 1 or 2 friends show up one day randomly bald.
No, not because they enlisted for NS. And definitely hopefully not due to health reasons.
More often than not, it was due to Hair For Hope.
In case you didn’t know, Hair For Hope is an annual fundraising event organised by the Children’s Cancer Foundation to raise awareness, funds, and show support for children battling cancer.
Their signature campaign element involves having volunteers shave their head as a form of support and company for cancer-stricken children in their battle.
This campaign has grown by leaps and bounds, from a mere 9 volunteers during its genesis in 2003 to record-breaking 6,656 shaves in 2014.
In 2017, they had a record-high 905 female shaves. Needless to say, females shaving their hair are much braver.
In 2018, they raised a total of $4.326 million in donations, beating all previous amounts.
This year, it seems like they may be on their way to shattering both records.
And one man contributed greatly on this journey.
Grab CEO Contributes His Hair For Hope
In a classic move of leading by example, the Grab CEO Anthony Tan has joined the fray in the children’s battle for cancer.
He has contributed more than just his hair by going bald, as his actions have drawn in $197,010 worth of donations by 29 July.
In Grab Singapore’s first participation in the Hair For Hope event, they have raised a total of $323,514 thus far.
Many donors have contributed large amounts thanks to Mr Tan, such as Mr Masayoshi Son, the founder of Japan’s SoftBank Group, who contributed S$90,000. Mr Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Uber, also donated S$10,000.
Well, since he’s a Malaysian with a base in Singapore, this could be the closest to experiencing “BMT”, no?
Fighting For A Cause
Mr Tan revealed a deep personal cause in supporting this battle: his mother-in-law had been a cancer patient, which heavily impacted his wife negatively.
He said: “I can’t imagine the grief that these children and their families go through when they receive the diagnosis and start cancer treatment.”
Ms Ong Chin Yin, Grab’s Head of People, also held a close cause as many women around her age have fought or are still fighting with cancer.
Mr Artem Alabastro, a senior marketing executive at Grab Singapore, had a health scare earlier this year involving his heart and he found it “extremely terrifying — even to me as an adult”.
He also added: “I can only imagine how difficult it is to be a child and to know that you have to battle cancer. In a way, this is my little gesture to support these kids, showing that I understand and that I salute their bravery and resilience.”
“Every shaven head helps to raise awareness of the plight of children with cancer and their families,” said Ms Neo Lay Tin, CCF’s Executive Director.
No matter if you have a personal cause, contribute in any way you can if you can.
These children could use any support available. Remember, every shaven head counts.