‘Overwhelmed’ and ‘humbled’ were just two of the words used by Hazel Webb to describe her feelings at the start what by anyone’s standards is an unusually emotional four day spell.
On Tuesday (March 4) the 21-year-old had her head shaved in front of room full of friends, family and fellow residents and staff at The Cangle Foyer in Haverhill - where she lives - to raise funds for Cancer Research UK.
Hazel, who is a resident rep at The Cangle, was inspired to undergo the fund-raiser after seeing at first hand the devastating affects of cancer on close friends and family.
What was already an emotional day was made more so by the presence of Niomi Twitchett, a close friend of Hazel’s who, at just 14, is undergoing chemotherapy after being diagnosed with leukaemia last September.
Niomi, of Haverhill, was happy to be there, and said: “Hazel’s my sister and best friend and I wanted to support her.”
Thanks to donations from friends, family and staff at the Cangle (and strangers) Hazel has raised about £350 so far, but more will come in as she is also planning a skydive in Beccles on May 4.
Hazel, who has lived at the Cangle since early January, said: “I was overwhelmed last night. I could not sleep, “I don’t know whether I was nervous about having it done but I knew it was going to a good cause and It’s been such an uplift, it’s been really confidence boosting.”
Following on the from the head shave, Hazel will be in Solihull tomorrow (Friday) to attend the Tenant Participation Advisory Service (TPAS) awards, where she is shortlisted in the Young Tenant of the Year category (central division).
Her work as a resident rep, in which she is able to put forward the views and ideas of residents to staff at Riverside, which runs The Cangle Foyer, has earned her the shortlisting.
Of the nominatin, Hazel said: “It’s all very humbling. I can’t give you the words to describe how I feel about it.
“It’s actually good that people are finally accepting who I am and what I am is all true.
“For me to be noticed out of many others and to be shortlisted for the award is something that won’t sink in.”
As part of her volunteering Hazel also visits other Riverside supported and sheltered accommodation across the country to gain an insight on the residents’ views on how services are run on a day-to-day basis.
She works as part of a team that assesses the support offered to residents to ensure that it matches Riverside’s high standards.
The Cangle Foyer specialises in working with vulnerable young adults to offer them support and training opportunities to gain independence.