Not everyone is thrilled with young women who plan to shave their heads for a cancer fundraiser

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      Kate Robinson and Erica Phillips both know what it's like for someone close to them to go bald.

      Robinson's father lost his hair during chemotherapy treatments for prostate cancer—a disease that took his life a week before her 16th birthday.

      Her mother also endured hair loss while suffering from ovarian cancer.

      "Right now, she's really healthy," Robinson says over the phone. "She's focusing on having an active lifestyle."

      Phillips's mother also lost her hair while undergoing treatment for breast cancer.

      The two young women have decided to show solidarity with their parents by having their heads shaved in public on Saturday (July 6) at a B.C. Cancer Foundation fundraiser called the Underwear Affair.

      It's designed to raise money for research into cancers below the waist, including prostate, testicular, ovararian, bladder, colorectal, pancreatic, uterine, and cervical tumours.

      According to the B.C. Cancer Foundation, they account for nearly 48 percent of all diagnosed cancers in B.C. (More information is available here.)

      But not everyone is enamoured with the idea of Robinson and Phillips having all the hair removed from their heads.

      "A lot of people are saying 'I don't want to donate. I don't support what you're doing. That's so ridiculous that two young girls like you would want to shave your head'," Robinson said. "It's been really sad for us."

      Robinson revealed that she came up with the idea after seeing how a woman was reluctant to shave her head for a massive sum of money on the TV show Fear Factor.

      It struck her as absurd.

      "There is so much more to live for than hair," she said. "So many people put so much value on it. It's not that important."

      In the annual Underwear Affair, competitors dress down to their skivvies and run 10 kilometres or walk five kilometres around False Creek, starting at Lot 6C at 88 Pacific Boulevard. That's where the two women plan to have their heads shorn.

      Robinson and Phillips are members of a 17-member team called Pirates of the Nether Regions, which has raised $70,000 at the Underwear Affair over the last three years.

      If you want to provide some financial support, you can find them on Twitter @PiratesNRegions and also on Facebook.


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      Jul 3, 2013 at 9:24pm

      I have a shaved head. The first time i had it shaved it was for a promotion to get into a seattle mariners game for free( in honor of then right fielder jay bunhner ) i fully support the efforts of these young girls, and i am sure jay would too in light of what they are raising funds for. If a cure for cancer is at stake, i will gladly shave more than my head!!


      Jul 4, 2013 at 9:23am

      I to have become disenchanted by the notion of simply "raising money for cancer" ... the idea is great on paper, & more so if the funds are actually directed for the medication/treatment of those suffering.

      For me, it was the 2011 Movember campaign which I participated in ... it broke all previous records (Canada: $38.1 Million / Worldwide: $124 Million) ... after much back-patting & high-fiving, much of the reporting focused on the number of participants & amount raised, but not much on what actual goal the money was to be used for ... another year rolled by & they started up the campaign again, but due to the lack of reporting on what developments in cancer research all of this Movember money was going towards, I bowed out.

      I also caught wind of this documentary on Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski, who has been stonewalled by the US FDA & Medical boards (if the opening scene doesn't break your heart, I don't know what will) ...

      Burzynski: Cancer Is Serious Business:

      I would also check out the documentary "Pink Ribbons, Inc." for more insight on how these charities have become big business:

      I'm not trying to undermine efforts ... obviously any of these people are trying to do right by their loved ones suffering from this condition ... it's just worth keeping some perspective on the bigger picture & the powers that be that would exploit this emotional circumstance.

      Demon Prince

      Jul 4, 2013 at 10:44am

      "There is so much more to live for than hair"? Bullshit. Hair is everything. These gals take their flowing locks for granted while some would kill to have even a quarter of their hairs.


      Jul 4, 2013 at 7:49pm

      I think Kate & Erica are doing an incredible job of bringing awareness to below the waist cancers. I also believe these ladies ought to be commended for their efforts. Congratulations Ladies!!