Girl sheds locks for less fortunate
for South Peace News
May 28 was the day of her sixth birthday, and instead of expecting a bunch of presents, Sarah Calahesin decided she wanted to give something very special to a good cause.
She gave up her beautiful, long hair.
“I’m doing it in case a sick person needs some hair,” said Sarah, who was quite excited about having her very long hair cut.
Though the idea of donating her hair to charity had been in the works for a while, her parents decided to wait until she turned six.
“We talked about it last year,” said her mother, Shannon Calahesin. “She said it was getting too long and wanted it cut, so we decided to donate it. She saw a commercial on TV with a girl who had no hair and she wanted to give it to her.”
Shannon says Sarah has always been a very open and generous child.
“Whenever friends come to visit, she’s always trying to give her things away.”
For a while, the Calahesins discussed keeping Sarah’s hair in the family. Shannon’s cousin suffers from colitis, and the medications she takes cause her hair to fall out. So the family briefly thought of having Sarah’s hair cut and sending it down to Locks of Love, an organization in the States that takes human hair and turns it into wigs for people who lose their hair due to various conditions.
But ultimately, the decision was made to go to Leonarda’s Beauty Salon, where many other people who have wanted to donate hair have gone, and have owner Helen Henderson send it to Locks of Love.
“We’ve been doing this for a long time,” said Henderson. “I usually wait until I have quite a bit of hair amassed and then I send it down to Locks of Love in Florida about once or twice a year.”
According to the website, “Locks of Love is a non-profit organization that provides hairpieces to financially disadvantaged children in the US and Canada under the age of 21 suffering from long-term hair loss from any diagnosis. Most of the children helped by Locks of Love have lost their hair due to a medical condition called alopecia areata, which has no known cause or cure. The prostheses [provides help] to restore their self-esteem and their confidence, enabling them to face the world and their peers.”
Henderson said she spent hours on the Internet trying to find a company in Canada that does what the American-based Locks of Love does, but she was unable to do so. So, at her own cost, she regularly ships donated hair to the organization.
As Sarah’s long hair fell to Henderson’s scissors, Shannon had tears in her eyes. But looking at the huge smile on Sarah’s face, she felt pride and admiration for her little girl.
“She never really liked long hair,” confessed Shannon. “She’s been waiting a long time to get it cut.”
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