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News > School Updates > Ponytail Project celebrates 10 year anniversary

Ponytail Project celebrates 10 year anniversary

In 2015, the compassionate initiative of four St Margaret's students was sparked by a shared determination to make a difference in cancer treatment.

In 2015, the compassionate initiative of four St Margaret's students was sparked by a shared determination to make a difference in cancer treatment. The inspiration came when the mother of a Year 12 student was diagnosed with cancer. Beth Flint, Meg Fraser, Maria Cobain, and Annabelle Crossley united to create the Ponytail Project, a ground breaking endeavour aimed at both raising funds and encouraging students to donate their hair for the creation of wigs or hairpieces.

Little did these visionary young women know, nine years ago, that their unique and innovative idea would strike a chord with communities. Today, the Ponytail Project has become an annual event at St Margaret's, but its impact extends far beyond the school gates. In 2019, Cancer Council Queensland recognised the project's significance and adopted it, allowing its positive influence to ripple across the entire state. The Ponytail Project continues to touch the lives of many, offering support and assistance to those affected by this challenging disease.

In its inaugural year, 21 students participated in the Ponytail Project, courageously cutting off their ponytails and collectively raising nearly $20,000. Over the years, this noble endeavour has gained tremendous momentum. In the remarkable year of 2023, a staggering 110 students embraced the #rockedthechop movement, generating an impressive sum exceeding $126,000. This brought the cumulative total amassed over the nine years to an astonishing figure surpassing $700,000. Beyond the financial impact, numerous ponytails have been selflessly donated, destined to be transformed into wigs for grateful recipients.

Throughout this journey, the commitment of many girls has been truly inspiring, with some demonstrating their dedication by lining up not just once, but in a few instances, even three times to contribute to this meaningful cause.

Moreover, the philanthropic efforts haven't been limited to cancer treatment alone. Funds raised through the Ponytail Project have also made a significant impact on the Minotti Trust. This contribution has been instrumental in assisting the young family of  beloved past student and staff member Amanda Minotti, who tragically lost her life to the disease in 2016. The Ponytail Project's ripple effect goes beyond fundraising, touching the lives of those in need and creating a lasting legacy of compassion and support.

As 2024 sets in, St. Margaret's eagerly anticipates the milestone tenth year of the Ponytail Project, and with it, the ambitious goal of reaching the million-dollar mark in fundraising. Recognising the significance of this moment, we are rallying the St. Margaret's community to join forces and help us achieve this remarkable feat.

Calling upon the wider community, including Old Girls and past or current parents, we extend an invitation for your participation in the 10th-anniversary celebration of the Ponytail Project. If you share our vision and would like to contribute to reaching the million-dollar target, we encourage you to register your interest. By doing so, you'll stay informed about the exciting developments leading up to the 2024 event. Some of you may even consider starting the journey now, growing your manes in preparation for this special occasion!

As in previous years, donated ponytails will continue to be transformed by Real Fringe Hairbands into hairpieces and wigs, offering solace and support to those enduring the effects of cancer treatment or dealing with conditions like alopecia.

By coming together for the 10th year of the Ponytail Project, we aim not only to surpass fundraising records but also to make a meaningful difference in the lives of individuals facing the hardships of cancer. Join us on Tuesday 30 July to help St Margaret’s make history. It will be the biggest Ponytail Project event to date and raise the most funds to help as many people as we can.

 

By David McKeon

Manager – Development and Community

 

 

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