One cut, two great causes to help brain research

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It took Belinda Norrie over 30 years to grow her hair.

But it took a brave decision and just over an hour to say goodbye to it.

Belinda is losing her locks for two great causes – Priority Research, at the Queensland Brain Institute at the University of Queensland, and Locks of Love, a charity which make wigs for children with cancer.

Belinda was motivated to cut her hair in support of her friend, Elisha, whose bravery in living with her diagnosis of dystonia with Parkinsonism, has been remarkable.

“As I was sending my hair overseas, I wanted to raise money in Australia,” Belinda said.

“I asked my friend Elisha which charity would benefit her most and she said the Queensland Brain Institute. Research is vital in finding a cure, for the unknown condition that she has.”

Queensland Brain Institute’s Professor Frederic Meunier is investigating changes in the biological processes that occur during Parkinson’s Disease which lead to the formation of toxic protein aggregates in the brain and the associated loss of brain cells.

Understanding these processes will hopefully lead to the development of improved treatments for those living with Parkinson’s Disease.

So on March 13, Belinda, along with her colleagues taking part in Shave for a Cure to raise funds for leukaemia research, had her hair cut by Amanda from Killer Looks on Anzac Avenue in Kallangur.

“I was really excited every time someone donated money,” Belinda said. “Each dollar is a chance for my friend to find out what condition she has and will hopefully lead to a cure.”

Belinda Norrie grew her hair for more than 30 years before deciding to lock off the lops for two great causes.

However, her target amount stayed just out of reach. That was until her family, friends, and a little bit of star power came to the rescue.

“Near the end, I was concerned that I wouldn't reach my fundraising goal, so I put the call out that I was $250 short of my goal and I was thrilled when Dr Steven Miles our local MP donated that exact amount,” Belinda said.

Belinda eventually raised over $800 to support Priority Research at QBI, a research institute focussed on two of the greatest challenges of modern science: understanding brain function, and the prevention and treatments of disorders of the brain.

Meanwhile, Belinda’s hair will be used by Locks of Love, which creates wigs for financially disadvantaged children who suffer from long-term hair loss.

But were there any regrets after spending a lifetime growing her hair?

“I absolutely love my new hair!” Belinda said. “I would only grow it, so I could donate it again.”

Philanthropy is critical to the research at the Queensland Brain Institute and we are very grateful for the support of Belinda and other individuals and organisations that fundraise on QBI’s behalf. You too can fundraise for QBI, for more information please click here.

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Last updated:
9 April 2019