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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Women grow hair only to lose it

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Jane Livesay and Sherri Hansel are growing out their hair only to have it cut off sometime this summer. The two women are donating their locks to Wigs for Kids, a special organization that creates custom designed hairpieces for kids who have lost their hair due to illness or accident.
Sherry Hansel and Jane Livesay have spent the past year working on a way to reach out to kids and young adults with hair loss.

The two women who work together at Tractor Supply Company (TSC), Greencastle, have been growing out their hair for several months.

"We have to grow it to a length of 12 inches before it can be cut. I think by this summer my hair will be long enough," said Livesay who decided to grow her hair after talking to Hansel.

When asked why they were growing their hair, the two women replied that they wanted to help kids and donating their hair to Wigs for Kids would do so.

Hansel first heard about a similar program called Locks of Love from family members. This program creates wigs for people of all ages.

"Wigs for Kids is exclusively for kids and I really like that idea," said Hansel. Her husband called the BannerGraphic about the women and their project.

"I think they should be recognized for doing this," he said. "It's a wonderful thing and other people need to know about it,"

Wigs for Kids focuses on cancer patients and includes other young people with similar appearance related challenges that cause hair loss such as alopecia, trichotillomania, lupus, hydrocephalus, burns and other disorders.

Each wig is custom-fitted and styled to help kids maintain a normal appearance.

The service is offered at no cost to kids and families. They do accept donations from individuals, companies and any organization interested in helping.

Wigs for Kids provided more than 125 children with hairpieces in 2007. Jeffrey Paul who had a successful hairdressing business that included presidents and models from all over the world as his clientele created the organization.

Paul's world changed on the day his 15-year-old niece walked into his salon, crying. She tearfully begged him to stop her hair from falling out. His first thoughts were that it was nothing serious.

But Paul saw the look in his brother's eyes and knew it was something more. His niece had been diagnosed with leukemia.

Paul understood that chemotherapy would help save his niece's life; it would also leave her with no hair.

"She was getting ready for gymnastic tryouts and wanted her hair. I promised her that she would have hair," Paul says. "And when you make a promise to a kid, you keep it."

He did some research and learned that designing wigs for children is complicated because kids are smaller and more active than adults.

So, he worked with doctors and prosthetics specialists to devise a hairpiece that would withstand typical kid activities, such as swimming, gymnastics, and sleepovers.

They came up with a wig that adhered to the scalp under the most aggressive conditions. And if it got wet, it would look like everybody else's hair, because every strand of hair was hand-tied.

Paul's niece was fitted with her wig in time for her gymnastics competition.

"My heart was pounding as my wife and I sat in the stands," he recalls. "And when my niece jumped off the apparatus, she looked up into the stands at us and pointed to her head. Tears ran down my face.

"I knew that God was taking me to another place in my life. The time was right for me to reach out."

Wanting to do something good for the community, he asked people to send him their old wigs, which he would then refurbish and donate to needy patients.

In no time, word got out that he was helping children and adults who needed wigs.

Local hair salons participate in the program. After the hair is cut it is braided or tightly bound in ponytails and secured with rubberbands at each end and in the middle.

Then it is placed in an envelope and mailed to the organization. Hair must be clean and dry and cannot be chemically processed, have a perm, color or highlighting.

Monetary donation with each ponytail to help offset the costs involved in processing the hairpieces which cost between $1,800-$3,000 each.

Sometime this summer when customers at TSC see two of its employees with much shorter hair know that somewhere a child is smiling with a new head of hair.

Persons wishing to take part in the Wigs for Kids program can contact the organization at 440-333-4433 or go to the website at wigsforkids.org

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My daughter-in-law and 11 year old granddaughter donates there hair year to locks of love and this is a wonderful thing. Not only do you give someone some much needed self-estem with beautiful hair but you get a free hair cut. This is a great organization.

-- Posted by sheder on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 12:29 AM

That is awesome and anyone involved with that is too. Wonderful idea and ladies, you have very kind hearts!

-- Posted by bannerstuff on Wed, Apr 2, 2008, at 7:56 AM

Way to go sis and Sherri, we are really proud of you for helping out the kids!!! I won't know my own sister when she cuts her off!!! Great Job, Jill Riggle

-- Posted by Jill Riggle proud sister on Thu, Apr 3, 2008, at 6:36 PM

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