07 Oct 2022

Laois hairdressers to skydive from 10,000 foot for Autism charity

Laois hairdressers to jump out of plane at 10,000 ft for Autism charity


Laois hairdressers are preparing to mess up their own hair by jumping out of an aeroplane for a good cause.

Darren Farrell who owns The Hair House in Rathdowney will be joined by fellow hairdresser and SNA Laura Fogarty, and Larina Kennelly, mother to a little boy with autism on their brave 10,000ft jump. 

It is all to raise money for Laois Offaly Families for Autism, a family run volunteer registered charity who support families across both counties in many ways including by supplementing therapies. 

"We have decided to come together and join forces and ‘Jump for LOFFA’ . This charity is very close to a lot of people’s hearts.

"I'm absolutely bricking myself but it's for an amazing cause and it's going to definitely be out of all of our comfort zones so at least I'm not alone on feeling that way," Darren said.

Larina explains how LOFFA helps her and her son.

"My son Adam who is 5 years old has a diagnosis of Autism. We live with the ups, downs and the great love at the end of the day. LOFFA is always at the end of the phone for information or just a chat. Not to mention their subsidy scheme to off set the price towards private therapies. This is a major support to families alone. With the social outings organised for children and adults LOFFA go above and beyond to help this families in anyway they can," Larina said.

Darren said he tries to make his salon autism friendly with quiet times and sensory toys and books, but wants to do more to help.

"I serve many kids and young adults that are on the spectrum and seeing first hand what LOFFA  do for these families is just amazing. Speaking to parents who have children on the spectrum really wanted me to help more with this organisation. For me it's all about the child or young adult getting to know me and having the child comfortable in the surroundings when in salon," he said.

Laura is a hairdresser for the last 12 years as well as a trained Special Needs Assistant.

"Seeing them leave the salon smiling is so rewarding as their hairdresser to see the change in their faces after a haircut and style.

"LOFFA do so much for so many families and we want to give back as much as we can and we want to raise as much as we can to alleviate any parents worries whether it be financially or emotionally with their child. It gives parents a chance to meet other parents with children whom are also autistic and growing a bond like no other. Friendships for life," she said.

So far they have received a total of €1,410 in donations. 

The trio hope to do their jump on September 26.

See their Gofundme fundraiser here. 

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