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Shay set for hair-raising shave to help raise €2,000 for autism

A SWORDS rugby veteran will be putting his head on the line for charity -- and auctioning off the chance to chop his hair, snip by snip.

Shay Collins has organised a fundraising headshave at Peacock's Steakhouse in his native River Valley, Swords, tomorrow.

The event has been arranged in aid of ABACAS, a specialist Kilbarrack school for children with autism, which provides autism-specific education in north Co Dublin.

"We try and have something every year and we held a football match for cystic fibrosis last year," Shay said. "We'll be having another match in September for St Michael's House, but in the meantime, we're having the headshave."

ABACAS was established in 2001 by parents of kids with autistic spectrum disorder as a means to provide autism-specific early intervention and currently caters for 30 children.

Shay decided on the headshave after a relative of a friend was diagnosed with autism.

"The craic has been building up and my hair's getting messy," Shay said. "I've been growing it since October, so it's four months now."

Several sponsorship cards have been dished out and Shay and his crew are hoping to raise €2,000 for the charity.

"We're going to have an auction on the night, where people can bid to shave my head," Shay added. "We'll also be selling a snip for a fiver each. I don't know what I'm getting myself into. Everyone is welcome to come down and it gets underway at around 8pm."