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Wirral mum to shave head in memory of teenager Sophie Jones
IT will be a close shave for one Wirral mum this month when she goes on a date with the dubbers to raise awareness of cancer in memory of Eastham teenager Sophie Jones.
Wallasey mum-of-three Lisa Kewley will say farewell to a full head of hair on April 26 when she shaves it all off to raise money for Wirral Hospice St John’s.
The decision came after the death of 19-year-old Sophie, who died from cervical cancer on March 15.
She was diagnosed with the disease in November but medical professionals told the aspiring model that she was too young to have contracted it, putting her severe stomach pains down to Crohn’s disease.
It was only when the former South Wirral High School student was admitted to hospital when her condition worsened, that doctors discovered the cancer had already spread.
“I didn’t know Sophie but when I heard about her I felt a desperate need to do something,” explained 36-year-old Lisa.
“It is so important to draw attention to the devastation of Sophie and her family and also of St John’s Hospice and the work they do.”
Lisa suffers from Fibromyalgia Syndrome, which affects her nervous system, joints and muscles and means she must use a combination of crutches and a wheelchair to get around.
She added: “As I’m disabled it doesn’t leave me much to do.
“A sponsored walk? No. A sponsored parachute? No. So I thought I would shave my head – all of it.”
Lisa has been fundraising via Facebook, as well as handing out sponsor forms door-to-door, and hopes to raise as much money as possible for the hospice which helps so many across the peninsula.
She will undergo the head shave at Jeanette’s Barbers in Poulton Road , where her children have been having their own hair cut for more than 10 years.
Lisa added: “Jeanette is all about community spirit and I couldn’t think of anyone better to ask to do this sponsored head shave.”
Following Sophie’s death last month, more than 320,000 people signed a petition calling for a debate on the failures that led to her death.
Liverpool MP Steve Rotherham presented the petition to Parliament on Tuesday, with a debate set to take place on May 1.
The overwhelming support given to the petition means the debate will be held in the main chamber of the Commons, rather than the usual location of Westminster Hall.
With 320,368 signatures, Sophie’s petition has secured more support than any other in the government e-petition website’s history.
Only 100,000 signatures are needed for a debate to be considered.
Wirral South MP Alison McGovern has spoken out in support of a debate, as has Prime Minister David Cameron who said something had gone “seriously wrong” and vowed to help find out why Sophie was failed so badly.
The lower age limit for routine testing in England is currently 25.
No-one under 20 died from the disease between 2009 and 2011 according to figures from Cancer Research UK, meaning Sophie is one of the youngest women to die from the cancer.
The age limit was reviewed by ministers five years ago after Jade Goody contracted cervical cancer.
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