Skip to content

Victoria youth skips haircuts for nearly 3 years, raises $12,000 for kids with cancer

St. Patrick’s elementary abuzz as 12-year-old loses a foot of hair

A thunderous roar from St. Patrick’s Elementary School marked a momentous haircut for sixth grader Thomas Joe.

The 12-year-old started growing his hair out 30 months ago, in what started as reticence to commit to going to get a haircut. As it got longer, someone suggested he use the opportunity to raise funds for the BC Cancer Foundation.

READ ALSO: Little libraries stock chalk across Greater Victoria to spread positive messages

Thomas sat in front of cheering peers at his Victoria school Wednesday afternoon (May 18) while Burt Hill, of Burt’s Barbershop, shaved his mane nice and close, leaving long locks to create wigs for those facing cancer.

Thomas also surpassed his goal of raising $10,000 for cancer research.

Thomas roped in his peers, Luke Lintern, Edwin Lum and Ikki Careno and schoolmates took the time to cheer on all four, chanting their names as Hill gave each a close cut.

It was an easy sell, Thomas said, he just asked his friends if they would go bald with him. Lintern said it was all about supporting his friend and the people Thomas was supporting.

READ ALSO: Student shares love of literacy with Oak Bay library project

“Now we know that we did something to help people with cancer,” Lintern said.

All four say they’ll likely do it again, though it could be a few years.

It didn’t take quite as long for Thomas’ dad Tony to get roped in. With a few cheers and chants from the entire St. Patrick’s elementary population, Tony too plopped into the impromptu barber chair for a buzz.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Thomas had raised more than $12,000.

Donate online at

Do you have a story tip? Email:

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

Christine van Reeuwyk

About the Author: Christine van Reeuwyk

I'm dedicated to serving the community of Oak Bay as a senior journalist with the Greater Victoria news team.
Read more