Council employee baldly goes for a head shave in aid of cancer patient Kim

Posted on: 25 January 2018

A North Devon Council employee is to undergo a head and sideburn shave in support of his colleague’s daughter.

Nick Poole, a council skip driver for more than 25 years, plans to celebrate his birthday on 2 February by having his long hair and sideburns shaved off in honour of 27 year old cervical cancer patient Kimberley Baldwin, who has been told that her cancer is terminal but she refuses to give up hope so is currently raising money to pay for additional treatment. Sadly cancer is a cause close to Nick’s heart as his 19 year old son lost his life in 1995 to Hodgkin Lymphoma – cancer of the white blood cells.

Kim’s mother, Tania Fletcher, has worked alongside Nick for many years, so he wants to raise the funds to help towards her goal of raising enough money to pay for immunotherapy treatment, which is not available on the NHS, to either prolong her life or hopefully even cure her cervical cancer.  She also wants to campaign to reduce the age that the smear test is given.  Currently the age is 25 but this does not detect the cancer at an early stage for many younger women.  Kim’s cancer was already at an advanced stage when she was diagnosed, aged only 26.

The event will take place at Brynsworthy Environment Centre, with a stylist from Barnstaple hair salon, Jill’s Hair Design, chopping off Nick’s long locks as his colleagues look on. Nick is a keen fundraiser, having previously taken part in charity head shaves to raise money for both Children in Need and The Red Cross.  For Nick’s 70th birthday in a few years, he plans to do a sky dive for charity and will also continue to grow his hair for even more charity head shaves in the future!

It’s appropriate that the head shave should be taking place so close to World Cancer Day www.worldcancerday.org , which is a global event taking place every year on 4 February, aiming to unite the world’s population in the fight against cancer and hoping  to save millions of preventable deaths each year by raising awareness and education about the disease, pressing governments and individuals across the world to take action.

Every day 9 women in the UK are diagnosed with cervical cancer and 3 women will lose their lives to the disease. Cervical cancer is the most common cancer in women under 35 but is largely preventable thanks to cervical screening and the HPV vaccination programme. The number of women dying from cervical cancer has halved over the past 28 years as a result of the NHS screening programme as well as improvement in treatment.

Despite this success over 3,000 women are diagnosed with cervical cancer each year. The majority of women diagnosed with cervical cancer have delayed coming forward for screening which has impacted on their ability to have early changes treated.

If you would like to sponsor Nick’s head shave, and help raise the money that Kim needs for her treatment, please visit her Justgiving page

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