A Rotarian Santa’s traditional beard shave has raised funds for a combined three charities for the first time.
Shrewsbury Severn Rotary Club member Peter Love decided to break with tradition and offered the proceeds of his 2022 beard shave to any charity which came forward with an interest. Three actually did – and as a result SaTH’s Swan Fund, Shrewsbury Homes for All and Ronald McDonald House Charities UK will all benefit from the total proceeds of £1,702.
Shrewsbury Severn Rotary Club, which has strongly backed Peter’s appeal, decided the major beneficiary would be the Swan Fund who receive £1,068. The other two charities each receive £317 and representatives from all three were present to witness the beard shave at Risdon’s Barbers, Shrewsbury Market Hall, where they also received their cheques. On behalf of Shrewsbury Severn Rotary Club, president John Yeomans presented the beard shave cheques to Jules Lewis (Swan Fund), Joanne Gough (SHFA) and Jordan Harbin (Ronald McDonald).
Said Jules, Swan EOLC facilitator and lead nurse: “I would like to thank Peter and the Rotary Club for the kind donation to the Swan Fund which I set up in 2015 with £500 of funeral donations following the death of my lovely dad (Harold Lewis) who died at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital. The fund allows us to improve some of our side rooms into swan rooms; we purchase things like CD players, mood lights, pictures, skylights and other items to improve the environment. To make it a more calm and peaceful space for family to spend precious time with their loved one. This kind donation will make a real difference at the hardest of times and we really appreciate Peter and the Rotary Club’s support.“
Jordan commented: “We are so grateful for individuals and groups like Peter and the Rotary Club of Shrewsbury Severn who are helping us at Ronald McDonald House Charities UK keep families close to their children in hospital by fundraising.” And Joanne, chief officer of Shrewsbury Homes for All, added: “The fabulous donation that Peter has kindly made to our charity will go to great use supporting our housing and homelessness prevention work. Thank you so much to Peter and everyone who has donated to this cause, it means so much to the charity.”
Shrewsbury Severn Rotary Club president John Yeomans who was amongst Rotarians supporting the beard shave, said: “I would like to thank Peter for once again growing his beard to raise money for three local charities. This is a wonderful example of the Rotary principle of putting Service above Self. Well done Peter – time to get it growing again ready for Santa duties next Christmas!”
Over the years Peter’s beard shave has raised many thousands of pounds for several charities that include Midlands Air Ambulance, Parkinson’s UK, Lingen Davies Cancer Appeal, Severn Hospice and Alzheimer’s Society.
He said: “The beard shave that traditionally follows my growing it for Santa appearances has proved to be quite an occasion in Shrewsbury Severn Rotary Club’s annual charity fundraising activities. The beard has grown to its longest-ever length this year and as a result I am delighted that three charities will benefit from it coming under the clippers. I am quite happy to face the rest of the winter feeling quite a bit colder round the face.”
Risdon’s Barbers have supported Peter’s annual beard shave for a large number of years and hairdresser Matt Glover, who professional applied the clippers free of charge, said: “We are always happy to help out every year. We are also always happy to support good causes and the Rotary guys.”