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On 19 July 2013, dyslexic singer, artist and make-up artist Klaire de Lys announced on her Youtube channel that she would shave her head if £5000 was raised in bursaries for people with dyslexia and on a limited income to access the Davis Dyslexia Programme.
£5035 later, Klaire fulfilled her pledge and shaved her head on 6 August 2013. An account and a short video of the event can be viewed at http://www.klairedelys.com/2013/08/09/i-shaved-my-head/
22-year-old Klaire, who lives in Reading, Berkshire, founded KlairedelysArt in January 2009, a YouTube Channel devoted to artistic make-up tutorials. To date, the channel has accumulated over 380,000 subscribers. There have been over 86,000,000 views of the videos on the channel. Klaire was featured in a recent article in the Observer, “YouTube UK: 20 of Britain’s most popular online video bloggers”.
After years of going undiagnosed, Klaire underwent a Davis Dyslexia Programme to address her personal challenges with dyslexia. “To say that that experience made a difference is a serious understatement,” says Klaire. “It changed my life completely and gave me the tools to achieve things I could only dream of before.” Klaire has published (in print, and as a video recording) a more detailed account of her experience of dyslexia and the Davis programme at http://www.klairedelys.com/2013/07/19/my-dyslexia-story/ The video version has been viewed 54,468 times.
The Davis Dyslexia Programme was created by Ronald Davis, author of the internationally best-selling book, “The Gift of Dyslexia”. The programme originated out of Davis’ own experience of severe dyslexia and is now provided in over 30 languages and in more than 45 countries. It plays to the perceptual talents inherent in dyslexia and makes innovative use of plasticine clay as a learning medium.
“At present, the Davis Programme receives no state funding,” says Richard Whitehead, Director of Davis Learning Foundation, the non-profit UK arm of Davis Dyslexia Association International. “We are delighted with Klaire’s amazing gesture, which will bring the benefits of the programme to people who could never have dreamt of them before.”
A few days prior to shaving her head, Klaire launched her new band, Fenix, with a song called “Paper Wings” which she wrote about her experiences with dyslexia. In the eight days since the song was launched on 3 August, it has been viewed over 20,000 times. The link to the song is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j8-RnzXJmTs
“I’m hoping that by approaching this project by both shaving my head to raise awareness, and releasing my song Paper Wings, I can really make a difference in the lives of Dyslexics,” says Klaire. “Not only raising funds to help, but also by hopefully creating a song which will continue to raise awareness long after my hair has grown back.”
People with dyslexia will not be the only people to benefit from Klaire’s gesture. Klaire plans to donate her hair to Wigs for Kids, a non-profit company providing hair replacement for children who have lost their hair because of cancer treatment, burns and other medical issues.
Klaire’s video about the campaign:
Campaign web page:
Klaire’s dyslexia story:
Video and account of Klaire’s head-shaving:
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