In 2004 when Peyton Dergay lost her battle with cancer, her friends were broken-hearted but not beaten. They wanted to make a difference—so they set out to do something about it. They remembered that when Dergay started losing her hair, she just shaved her head. Soon after, many male friends did the same in her honor.
“The charity I help with is called Love is Bald,” encore’s 2013 Best Volunteer, Amanda Young, says. “It is a non-profit that we started here in Wilmington in honor of our friend Peyton Dergay. We are an organization that raises money for other cancer charities. Our philosophy is to live life to the fullest, never take life for granted, and to always give back. In the few years we have been around we have donated to Pretty in Pink, St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the Hospitality House, testicular cancer, and the SamFund. Our events include volleyball tournaments, fashion shows, head shaving, cornhole tournaments, and the latest was a male auction! It is dear to my heart because so many people are affected by [cancer].”
Young, a working woman and mother to her 10-month-old, will keep busy in 2013 with several events for Love is Bald. This Saturday, February 23rd, brings the Purple Carpet Event, a luncheon for children and families who have gone through or are currently battling a terminal illness, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Port City Community Church (250 Vision Dr.). For more information, e-mail Tracy Guardino at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On March 16th at the Lo Tide Run held in Carolina Beach, Love is Bald will sponsor a team for one of its members, Chere Rice, who was just diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in January. Folks can register for the race under the name “We Got This Chere.” Then on March 17th, they will shave heads for donations at Fibber’s Public House (1610 Pavilion Place) to raise money for Rice’s medical treatments. “Plus, the last Sunday of every month we have a cornhole tournament at Whiskey Creek off Masonboro Loop Rd., and the proceeds go to Love is Bald,” Young informs.
The winner says she feels honored and blessed to be recognized for her volunteer work. “But more than that, I am honored and blessed to be a part of Love is Bald,” Young affirms. “I thank God every day for the amazing friends I have and this awesome community that I have become a part of. Also, none of this would be possible if not for Kelli Neese Russell. Thank you so much for starting this amazing organization!”
Other volunteers doing good deeds are Kelli Russell and Greg Brinson.—Bethany Turner