I am a Trustee and Treasurer of Alopecia UK. I started both these roles in June 2013.
How did I get involved with Alopecia UK?
I contacted the charity in January 2013 to see if I could help. I was working at the time for a professional membership organisation and had experience of charity management, fundraising and events, which I wanted to use for a cause I felt passionate about. I went along to my first Trustee meeting in May 2013 and was so impressed with the work that was being achieved by the group of volunteers that I offered to help.
What is my 'alopecia story'?
I have had alopecia universalis for two years. I had a couple of small patches in previous years which came and went. Over the space of two months I lost all my hair which was incredibly distressing. I drew strength from the forum on Alopecia UK’s website and so knew I was not alone. In time, I was able to come to terms with my hair loss and I purchased a number of wigs (all of which have different names!) which gave me the confidence to have a bit of fun with my look.
A defining moment for me was the Alopecia UK Flash Mob in Liverpool in September 2013 which was the first time I had met a large number of people with alopecia and the first time I had ever removed my head covering in public. This really helped me become comfortable in my own skin again and inspired me to help others who were having difficulty coming to terms with their hair loss.
What are my hopes for Alopecia UK?
I would like there to be more awareness and understanding of alopecia and for Alopecia UK to be recognised as the national charity which supports those with alopecia and their families. The charity needs to attract sustainable resources to enable it to continue its valuable work. I am confident that, with the commitment and dedication of all those who work behind the scenes of the charity, it will continue to build on its achievements over the last 10 years and I look forward to being a part of this.