A UTTOXETER teenager has raised more than £3,000 by shaving her head for a charity supporting her friend in her battle against cancer.
Cara Mathews has already handed over £2,077.41 to Teenage Cancer Trust but the cash is still rolling in - well and truly exceeding her original target of £500.
Her grand total of £3,030.81 saw the 17-year-old raise the £260 needed for her World Challenge Trip to Borneo, with £270.20 donated online and £2,760.31 collected offline with £400 yet to come in from internet donations.
Cara decided she wanted to do something extraordinary for the Teenage Cancer Trust after seeing how the charity supported her friend Eleanor Oldroyd, of Tean, as she fights sarcoma.
The Thomas Alleyne’s High School pupil said: “I raised way more than expected. I am really pleased and my mum’s very proud, she said proud doesn’t cover it. I am hoping that the money I have got to come in does come in but I have the bulk of it now.
“Eleanor is doing well at the moment and she has now had the operation to remove the tumour and because it has gone so well they have cut out one of her cancer drugs.
“She is spending less time in hospital now and before when she came home she was very ill as her immune system was low. Now she is doing a lot of better and we went to a party and for a meal before I go away.
“It is so nice to see her getting dressed up. Now the tumour has gone you do feel like she is on the mend and she is looking a lot happier and healthier and making the most of her time out of hospital. She has got a long way to go but it is positive that the tumour has gone.
“I would like to say thank you to everyone who supported me as we still have lots of money coming in. It has been lovely how much people are willing to give and I really appreciate it. It is a really great cause.”
The Teenage Cancer Trust has been hitting the headlines over the last few months after Stephen Sutton’s story touched the hearts of millions around the world.
Cara added: “I am really happy the charity has been getting so much publicity as I know how much they have been helping Eleanor. Everybody knows about cancer and many people know someone who has gone through it but there has not been much hype about the Teenage Cancer Trust.
“Now it has been given so much money and everything that Stephen did was amazing and I am glad because it is a really good cause.”
The teenager is now on her travels with World Challenge to Borneo and as her hair is growing back fast she has decided to keep it short for the time being.
She said: “I do really like my hair now. At first I did not know what it would be like and I was excited but nervous. Now it is growing back really fast and I can style it. I am keeping it short and I think it will be easier with going to Borneo where it will be really hot.”
Anyone who would like to donate to Cara’s cause can do so by visiting www.justgiving.co.uk/Cara-Mathews1