29/11/2021 – 29/11/2022.
As the year comes to a close there’s a whole lot of thanks to dish out.
Across the year, we have raised an incredible: $9,390 –
And as HairPeace finishes up, I wanted to take a moment to recognise all the different people who played a part in the year we had.
Firstly, a thank you to everyone who donated to this cause.
While money is never the most important thing, when you’re fundraising across a whole year, it’s going to be pretty high up there.
So a thank you to those who chose to dig deep into their wallets to support the organisations we were raising money for.
I was nervous setting such a large amount as the ‘goal’ for HairPeace in twelve months, but the generosity of the collective group of people who have helped me achieve – then exceed – these goals has really made me proud.
These two organisations, SafeSteps and Communicare, are ones whose work I so believe in.
They are host to a number of hard-working, devoted professionals whose work each day is changing lives for the better.
So for me, to support them was to raise funds for them to continue doing exactly what they are doing.
A thanks to the people who sacrificed time and goods and became a part of #TeamHairPeace.
Those who gave up their Sunday morning to ride 100km, or who spoke about HairPeace to those who hadn’t heard of us,
Whether through purchasing an extra box of tampons at the supermarket, or lacing up and joining us on a fun-run,
Buying a tee, sharing a post, or sharing some much-needed words of support during some of the harder moments,
No-one needed to do any of this, but I am so grateful to those who decided that they wanted to.
The fact that the name HairPeace became somewhat recognised was shocking enough,
And knowing there was a growing collection of people behind the movement helped me feel confident that the year could live up to my dreams of what I hoped it could be.
There are a few organisations who also stepped up to the plate and helped out HairPeace through promotions, the donation of goods, and more.
To ClareMaree Artistry who created our HairPeace logo,
To BizWear, who created and donated all of the HairPeace tees,
To Ocean Grind, who were the first to chuck up a HairPeace poster on their community board,
To the Mavis boys, who had a HairPeace tip jar on their counter for months,
The Torquay Larder for your support and generosity,
To the PEGS Footy Club, who donated a portion from their own fundraiser for our cause,
To my work, Streem, who supported me from the very beginning and didn’t bat an eye when I asked for a week off work to walk from the bottom to the top of Victoria.
To Olivia Winn Podiatry Inc. who taught me everything I needed to know about avoiding blisters and how to keep on walking through the pain of ‘PD’ of the knee.
And to Kate Mansfield Hair, who helped me say goodbye to my locks as we chopped and donated them to someone who needed them far more than I ever did.
And to all of my friends and family who had to put up with domestic abuse stats, HairPeace events and donation links being plastered all over their social media feeds for a year.
(Infinite thanks to the countless others who I’ve probably forgotten but will add to this list as soon as I think of you.)
Thanks too, to the surprisingly high number of straight men who indulged me in hair-chat.
This was an unexpected bright point of the year and the journey of growing my hair.
In the age of the man-bun, these guys walked me through how to use a hair-tie, how many times per week to wash my hair, and held my hand through the ups-and-downs that come with having long hair.
To the neighbours who asked how it was going as my hair and I walked past them down the street,
To the people who stopped me on my walk to Yarrawonga and asked about the cause,
And to the people who showed so many different forms of kindness throughout the year.
Thank you to those who chose to speak openly and vulnerably to me about a topic that can oftentimes feel too dark to air.
I wanted this year to shine a light on the darkness of domestic abuse,
And start conversations that could continue to be had long after the year of HairPeace had ended.
HairPeace gave me confidence, it gave me purpose, and it gave me drive.
And that’s something I will always be grateful for.
For brightening darker days,
Giving reason to trying times,
Pushing me to do more, and try new things,
And helping me both connect and reconnect.
Because HairPeace more than anything else was about building and utilising a community.
Reconnecting with people that a pandemic had distanced,
And connecting me with people I may have never otherwise met.
For conversations, for fundraisers, and for ensuring that bonds and friendships remained strong.
With the often unseen, insidious nature of domestic abuse – victims can feel isolated from the world around them, and helpless to ever stop the pain being inflicted upon them.
Through HairPeace, I realised how important having a shoulder to lean on, or an ear to listen can be.
I realised how important it was for us to reach out; for when we needed it, and for when someone else may too.
With HairPeace, I wanted this painful topic to be front and centre.
To keep it out of the shadows,
To have people know that help existed out there.
So thank you to everyone who spoke with me so openly about their lived experiences, their fears, and their hopes for others across this year.
HairPeace won’t stop domestic abuse,
Unfortunately a lot of these types of fundraisers will barely make the smallest of dents in the issue.
But hopefully with the money we raised,
And by having conversations we may otherwise have avoided,
We got some necessary resources in front of a few more eyeballs, and helped some organisations save more lives.
By banding together, we utilised the power that each of us has, and multiplied it.
The power of conversation,
Of checking in on our loved ones,
And of social media too.
And while the year and the fundraiser has come to a close,
HairPeace will be something that stays with me forever –
And hopefully this topic remains out of the shadows,
As a light is shone onto evil,
And a sun rises onto someone’s darkest times.
And a final thanks to John Lennon, Joe Bell, and Bo Burnham whose work inspired the idea which grew to become HairPeace.
And while our GoFundMe has now officially closed, donations can still be made to SafeSteps and Communicare by clicking on the links below.
And check out the Friends of HairPeace who made this year possible:
and Sustainable Salons.