Derry business owner Sarai in ovarian cancer awareness drive

Sarai Donnelly
Sarai Donnelly

A Derry business owner who had one of her ovaries removed as a baby, is to stage an event to raise funding for ovarian cancer research.

Sarai Donnelly, who runs Inked Dollz Hair Extensions in Shipquay Town House and Day Spa, has teamed up with Target Ovarian Cancer and is inviting the public to come along to the fundraising event at her premises on Saturday, March 24. She is also hoping other local businesses will get involved.

Sarai (29) said that her own experience, which has left her with one ovary and meeting women with ovarian cancer, had spurred her on to raise awareness of the symptoms of ovarian cancer.

She said research has shown that four out of five women in the UK cannot name bloating as a key symptom of the disease.

Sarai, who is also a dental implant and sedation nurse, said: “I have a particular interest in Ovarian Cancer because when I was five days old I had a huge operation to remove a cyst.

“The doctors weren’t sure which organ the cyst was attached to until they began the surgery. When they got to the cyst it was attached to my left ovary and I had it removed. Growing up I have always felt my right ovary was so precious to me, especially because I want a family of my own in the future.

“Because of this I know the importance of ovarian health to women and I have decided I want to help raise money so more people can help detect symptoms earlier.

“To do this I am holding an event in my salon in Shipquay Town House and Day Spa where people can come in and have a hair extension strand in plum or teal placed, to symbolise the support of those with ovarian cancer.

“I want to raise as much money as possible so women can detect symptoms of Ovarian Cancer sooner - early diagnosis saves lives.”

Sarai has highlighted the symptoms of Ovarian Cancer which includes: persistent bloating, feeling full quickly and/or loss of appetite, pelvic or abdominal pain and urinary symptoms. Other symptoms can include unexpected weight loss, a change in bowel habits and extreme fatigue.

“Anyone experiencing these symptoms, and they are not normal for them, should see their GP,” Sarai urged.

Speaking about her own fund-raising drive she added: “To even save one life would mean I was going in the right direction about the importance of raising awareness during Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. I’m passionate about raising awareness of this disease since I am aware of how important ovarian health is to women. I hope that the money we raise will help even more women learn about the symptoms of ovarian cancer in years to come.”

Target Ovarian Cancer works to improve early diagnosis, fund research and provide support to women with ovarian cancer. To donate go to: www.targetovariancancer.org.uk/