Awesome Anandita, 15, shaves hair for charity that helped her

By Jill Dando News

Anandita, 15, shaved her hair for charity Gympanzees after it helped boost her confidence.

The Bristol-based charity in the UK did wonders for her confidence by by providing a safe space to exercise and meet others.  

Anandita was recently diagnosed as autistic at age 15, and she has been trying to find ways to make her life more manageable.   

Anandita before and after pics – photo Gympanzees

She said: “As a disabled person, I’m always looking for ways to make my life more accessible.

“I’ve found that as I’ve gotten older, my sensory difficulties have gotten significantly worse, and I’ve become much more sensitive to how each hair feels on my head and skin.

“I decided to shave my hair to help make my life more manageable and thought, why not support Gympanzees in the process!” 


Gympanzees, have been running pop-up play and exercise centres for disabled children and young people during the Easter and Summer holidays whilst they fundraise for a permanent home in the city.  

Anandita said, “So many disabled children and young people such as myself struggle to access inclusive play, fitness and leisure activities, but thanks to visiting Gympanzees me and so many others can exercise, play and socialise together.” 

Anandita set an initial fundraising target which has now been smashed, and donations continue to flood in for the teenager.  


Anandita added: “Before recently, I’d never fundraised, I had little knowledge on how to do it, and I wasn’t even aware that literally, anyone could do it. I feel so happy that we hit and have gone beyond my target!”

Gympanzees gives me a space where I feel included, accepted, and encouraged to be myself – I don’t just feel my disabilities and additional needs are being tolerated.

“I am celebrated for who I am, and that’s why I’m fundraising for Gympanzees, as that is something every single person should get to experience in their life.” 

Gympanzees’ mission is to enable every child and young person with a disability to access regular play, exercise, and friendship, to improve their physical and mental health and wellbeing, and to lift their families out of isolation 

There are over 1 million disabled children and young people from 0-25yrs old in the UK and 66,000 within one hour drive of Bristol.  77% can’t regularly access leisure facilities.

In Bristol, 69% say this is a severe to extreme problem in their lives. 92% of parents feel that their child with complex needs does not have the same opportunities to play as their non-disabled peers.

Whole families are isolated with 65% of parents saying they feel isolated some or all of the time and 72% experiencing mental health problems as a result 

Gympanzees have spent the last four years supporting 1,000s of children and young people with disabilities and their families, proving the need for a permanent facility in Bristol through their Pop-Up facilities, Lending Library and Online Resources 

Gympanzees has launched their capital appeal ‘Project Home’ – to build a world class facility in Bristol that will cater for people (0-25yrs) with sensory, physical, learning difficulties, SEN and any mild to profound disability and open seven days a week.

It will provide endless possibilities for health, happiness and support and will create cherished family memories 

People can support Gympanzees by visiting   

Anyone who would like to support Anandita’s Go Fund Me Page can do so here or to see more about this fantastic charity visit

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