Letchworth woman's headshave for mental health charity in dad's memory
PUBLISHED: 07:07 26 July 2018 | UPDATED: 07:13 26 July 2018
A Letchworth woman has had her head shaved to support a mental health charity in memory of her much-missed dad, who tragically took his own life.
Kimberley Jeeves braved the shave for CALM – the Campaign Against Living Miserably – a charity which works to prevent male suicide, the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK.
The 32-year-old commemorated what would have been her dad Andrew Silsby’s 53rd birthday by taking on the challenge, and raised £715 for the national cause.
Kimberley told the Comet: “Everyone has said to me that my dad would have been very proud of what I have achieved in his memory, and he would have supported me every step of the way.
“It felt brilliant when I checked my fundraising page and saw that I had reached my initial target of £500.
“Every time I check it, it’s gone up and up – and it makes me emotional every time I check it.
“I did this in memory of my dad and I wanted to stress the importance of men’s mental health. It’s OK not to be OK.
“Braving the shave is my way of getting people to talk about suicide and to raise awareness of just how many men die by suicide every week.”
The day of the shave, on July 14, was entirely dedicated to Andrew – with a cake for his birthday the day before. And Kimberley’s friend Kelly Hawkins showed solidarity by also having her head shaved.
In September this year, it will be 13 years since Andrew took his life.
Kimberley said: “Life hasn’t been the same since that day and I hope I never go through the hurt, pain and heartache ever again. We put it down to not talking or asking for help.”
CALM offers support to men and bereaved families in the UK via a helpline and webchat, and challenges a culture that has blamed for preventing men from seeking help when they need it.
Kimberley donated her shaven locks to the Little Princess Trust, which provides wigs to children and young people who have lost their hair due to cancer treatment and other illnesses.
Kimberley is still accepting donations for her headshave via her JustGiving page. See justgiving.com/fundraising/kimberley-jeeves.