Voluntarily going near bald at the beginning of October has paid off for a Vernon woman and her longtime friend.
Tanis Marquette and Bree Gable from Prince George shaved their heads at the Beauty Bar on 27th Street Sunday, Oct. 4, as part of a fundraiser for an Edmonton toddler, the daughter of a mutual high school friend from Prince George. The event also included an online auction.
“Our head-shaving event itself raised more than $17,000, and the auction raised $12,896,” said an excited Marquette. “In total, we were able to raise $30,177 so we passed our goal of $30,000. It was a very successful event.”
The event was shown through a live video feed on Facebook in order to avoid drawing a crowd due to COVID-19 precautions, and less than 25 people were on hand for the haircuts, conducted by Sun-FM Sunrise Show hosts Betty Selin and Jerhett Schafer.
The money raised will go to the family of one-year-old Harper Hanki, who is battling Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 1. Hanki has been receiving doses of Spinraza, a drug that carries a price tag of $125,000 per shot which is administered via lumbar puncture. What the Hankis are aiming for is a one-time IV treatment with a drug called Zolgensma. The cost of the drug is $2.8 million and it will change Harper’s life.
Harper has to receive this drug before the age of two on July 12, 2021.
“We are incredibly thankful to everyone who donated, to everyone who shared our story, and to all of our auction donors,” said Marquette. “The biggest thank you goes to Linda from the Beauty Bar who went above and beyond to help make this event as successful as it was. Without her, it would have looked very different!”
Marquette said Harper and her family are still fighting very hard for the medication, and it is going to be a long road for them still.
“We were so happy to have had this opportunity to help them and are so thankful for such an amazing community who came together to help a child in desperate need, Amazing!” she said.