Jets shave their heads for breast cancer

Jets players and staff shaved their heads on Tuesday to support Ben Kennedy, as he raises funds for breast cancer this week.

Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets players and staff shaved their heads on Tuesday morning to support one of the Club-s longest serving players Ben Kennedy, as he raises funds and awareness for breast cancer this week.

Jets Members and supporters unable to get to the game can make donations online by CLICKING HERE.

Ben's mother Karen, is currently receiving treatment for a breast cancer recurrence, giving the Jets- shot-stopper a first hand understanding of the very real impact this disease has on so many families in the community and how important detection, treatment, support and awareness of this disease is.

The Jets have partnered with Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation (HBCF) to arrange a week of fundraising and promotional activities, culminating in a ‘Pink Day for BK- when the Newcastle Jets take on Melbourne Heart at Hunter Stadium on Saturday, March 8.

On Tuesday, Kennedy said goodbye to his infamous long locks in support of his mother while the vast majority of his Jets teammates also followed suit.

The players and staff who did not shave their heads each donated a minimum of $100 to HBCF.

Kennedy said the decision to shave his head to raise funds for HBCF was an easy one to make.

“I was at home one day and my hair was annoying me and I wanted to cut it off, so I thought why not shave it and raise a bit of money,” Kennedy said.

“I ran the idea by the Club and they were all for it, so we just went from there and now all the boys are behind it and most of them are shaving as well.

“Being a guy, you don-t really think about breast cancer that much and you definitely don-t realise how big it is and how many people are affected until someone in your family is hit by it.”

Despite going from luscious shoulder length hair to practically bald in a couple of minutes, it didn-t take long for Kennedy to embrace his new look.

“I-ll have to throw my headbands away now and I won-t have to do my hair every morning - not that I did anyway - but I don-t mind it being short, it-ll be low maintenance,” Kennedy said.

“I think I lost about five kilos… It-s a different feeling for sure and something that I-ll have to get used to, but it-s for a good cause so hopefully we can raise a lot of money.”

Ben-s mother Karen said she was extremely proud of her son for his fundraising efforts.

“I didn-t think he-d go through with it to be honest, but I-m very proud… it really means a lot to have the support of family and friends,” Karen said.

The Newcastle Jets have produced a specially designed pink t-shirt to raise funds for HBCF, which will be on-sale at Saturday-s clash with Melbourne Heart for $25. For every pink t-shirt purchased, $5 will be donated to the HBCF.

Both the Jets and Melbourne Heart players will wear the pink t-shirts as they make their way onto the field prior to kick-off in the match, while the Jets players will also wear pink laces during the fixture.

HBCF will be the official match day partner and all Jets Members and supporters are encouraged to dress in pink and support Ben and HBCF. Volunteers will be collecting donations for HBCF within the stadium precinct on match day.

There will be a prize for the best dressed fan, with Members and supporters invited to tag their Intsagram photos of them dressed in pink with #PinkDayForBK to enter the competition. The winning entry will receive a pair of goalkeeper gloves signed by Ben Kennedy.

Hunter Breast Cancer Foundation is a volunteer based Foundation which provides many essential services for patients and families living with breast cancer and undergoing treatment, including to Ben Kennedy and his family.

Community support enables the Foundation to provide transport services to and from treatment as well as pay for professional cleaners and lawn maintenance people to take care of their homes.

The Foundation also provides more than 650 post operative cushions free of charge to patients across the Hunter and scholarship[s to children for educational expenses and much more. Australian women have a 1 in 8 lifetime risk of developing breast cancer.

Jets Members and supporters unable to get to the game can make donations online by CLICKING HERE.

For more information about HBCF CLICK HERE.