Today FM’s Alison Curtis talks about the Shave or Dye campaign for the Irish Cancer Society and doing this year’s Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon for a very personal reason.
Shave or Dye is an incredible fundraising initiative that has gone way beyond Today FM. Since it began in 2010 it has raised over e8million for the Irish Cancer Society and has seen so many events organised across the country by amazing people, all raising much needed funds.
It started with the idea that Today FM presenters and listeners could choose to either shave their heads or dye their hair to fundraise and it just grew stronger from there each year. I got involved in year one of the campaign by letting listeners to my then night time show choose the colour I would dye my hair! It ended up a very purpley-red shade; I don’t think there’s even a word to describe that colour!
Since then, thousands of individuals and group events have been hosted across the country each year with amazing results and really heartwarming stories to share with us. There are a few standout memories for me. The first year Gill Waters (who came up with the idea of Shave or Dye) bravely shaved her head live on air. I think it’s brave for anyone to shave their head, but I do think it’s a bigger jump for women. My second memory was the year the station created the Punks vs Monks theme as part of the campaign and DJ Tony Fenton was so proud to be presented as a punk rather than a monk!
I last ran the Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon in 2009 and I took my training very seriously at the time! What I loved most about it was the camaraderie amongst everyone. Walkers, runners, those cheering us on, we were all on the same page that day. It felt so powerful and it was an incredible event to be part of.
A whole team of Today FM women are getting involved this year including Ann Gleeson from The Louise Duffy Show in the afternoons and Susan Keogh from our Newsroom. I’m really looking forward to it. I honestly planned to start training in January but I had a lot of visitors over from Canada, so training starts this week. Runners are bought, as well as a new running jacket, water bottle and bra. Here we go!
I'm running this year’s Vhi Women's Mini Marathon on behalf of the Irish Cancer Society in memory of a great colleague and wonderful friend, Tony Fenton. I miss him more than I can put into words and the impact he had on my life and on everyone who met him is immeasurable so this is the least I can do.
This year Today FM is delighted to support the Vhi Women’s Mini Marathon. Alison Curtis and team Today FM will join 40,000 women and attempt to run, walk or crawl the 10K! Tune in to Saturday Breakfast with Alison Curtis, 8-11am every weekend on Today FM for more. Todayfm.com cancer.ie