Where to Donate Hair for Cancer Patients?
Cancer is one of the most dangerous and prevalent health disorders in the world today.
Millions of people diagnosed with cancer strive through the pain and efforts and get successfully treated. However, hair loss is one of the most inevitable aspects of suffering from cancer.
To boost the patient’s morale and self-confidence, regaining hair is extremely effective.
Although regrowth of hair using conventional means is not possible, we can surely help cancer patients by donating hair that can be converted into wigs and hairpieces.
You can donate your hair to help children and adults with cancer. Numerous organizations are engaged in receiving donated hair.
However, you need to keep in mind that every organization has its own rules and regulations regarding donating hair to cancer patients.
Some of these organizations have criteria guiding the minimum length of hair which can be donated, some may decline to accept hair that has been permed or colored.
Still, other organizations readily accept donated hair which can be used for other causes.
Why should you donate hair to a cancer patient?
Those who have suffered from cancer, or who have seen a loved one go through the ordeal can empathize with cancer patients and feel the urge to give back.
You can help cancer patients in various ways, such as participating in fund-raisers or donating money directly to cancer patient care organizations in the US.
However, if you cannot afford to donate money then you can still give something back by choosing to donate your hair.
Donated hair is one of the best ways to alleviate a cancer patient’s suffering and boost their morale.
What are the criteria for donating hair to cancer patients?
Although the specific criteria may differ from organization to organization, here are some common criteria that govern how one can donate hair to cancer patients:
- Hair should be neat, clean and dry in a ponytail or braid before being cut. You should refrain from applying any hair-care product, such as mousse, gel, hair spray and keep the hair completely dry before it is packed for sending.
- Only natural hair is accepted for donation, thus wigs, dreadlocks and hair extensions are not accepted.
- Your braid or ponytail should be a certain length to be acceptable. You can measure curly hair by pulling them taut to take the measurement. Usually, organizations accept donated hair that is at least 8 to 14 inches long.
- Most organizations do not accept grey hair while others do.
- Many organizations refrain from accepting permed hair while others accept it.
- Certain organizations will accept hair that has been bleached however most organizations tend to reject highlighted hair.
- Organizations usually connect donors with recipients directly for privacy reasons.
- Most organizations accept donated hair that has been cut by your preferred hairstylist when you send your hair for donation. However, it is strongly advised to contact the organization and enquire about this as some organizations tend to prefer donors to cut their hair from a saloon they have collaborated with for this purpose.
- Most organizations will award you a certificate of appreciation in return for your donated hair.
Where should you choose to donate hair to cancer patients?
This is our selection of organizations that accept donated hair for cancer patients in the US. Please make sure that you confirm the eligibility criteria and donation process beforehand with the organization of your choice.
If you have further questions, we advised you to connect directly with the said organization’s official website:
1 – Childhood Leukemia Foundation
The Childhood Leukemia Foundation receives hair donations under its Hugs-U-Wear initiative. Under this program, the foundation provides wigs to girls who have suffered the loss of hair because of cancer treatment.
Guidelines for donating hair to cancer patients through Childhood Leukemia Foundation:
- The minimum acceptable donated hair length should be at least 12 inches.
- Dry and clean the hair before cutting.
- Put the hair into a ponytail or braid it before cutting it.
- Secure the cut braid or ponytail in a sealed plastic bag with rubber bands on both ends.
- Put a plastic bag with donated hair in a padded envelope.
- You can include your name and address on a full-sized separate sheet of paper within the envelope.
- Do not pack hair that has been swept off the floor.
- Avoid sending grey hair for donation to Childhood Leukemia Foundation.
2 – Locks of Love
Locks of Love organization offers hairpieces to children from low-income households who are suffering from cancer, or a terminal illness, which causes hair loss.
Guidelines for donating hair to cancer patients through Locks of Love organization:
- The minimum hair length should be at least 10 inches.
- Dry and clean your hair before cutting it for donation.
- Arrange hair into a ponytail or braid before having it cut.
- Place the cut braid or ponytail carefully in a sealed plastic bag with rubber bands on both ends.
- Seal the plastic bag with donated hair in a padded envelope.
- Complete the hair donation form provided to you and place it in the envelope.
- Permed or colored hair is acceptable however bleached hair is not.
- Avoid donating hair swept off of the floor as it is unusable.
3 – Looks Like Me
Looks Like I am yet another organization that accepts donated hair for cancer patients.
This organization specializes in creating hairpieces and wigs for children who have suffered hair loss due to medical treatment.
Guidelines to donate hair to cancer patients through the Looks Like Me foundation:
- The minimum acceptable hair length is 12 inches.
- Dry and clean the hair before cutting it for donation.
- Arrange hair into a ponytail or braid before having it cut.
- Put the ponytail or braid in a clear, sealed plastic bag and secure the plastic bag with rubber bands on both ends.
- Print your name on the sealed plastic bag clearly before placing it in a padded envelope.
- Permed or colored hair is acceptable for donation.
4 – Pantene Beautiful Lengths
Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program provides real-hair wigs for free in collaboration with the America Cancer Society wig banks across the US.
Guidelines for donating cancer to cancer patients through the Pantene Beautiful Lengths program:
- The minimum acceptable hair length is 8 inches.
- Wash, clean and dry your hair without using styling products.
- Arrange hair into a ponytail or braid before having it cut for donation.
- Place the ponytail or braid in a sealed plastic bag and secure the bag with rubber bands on both ends.
- Place the sealed plastic bag into a padded envelope.
- Print your name and address on a full-sized sheet of paper and place it with the sealed plastic bag into the padded envelope.
- You can donate hair that has been colored using vegetable dyes, semi-permanent dyes and rinses. However, hair that has been chemically treated, permanently colored or bleached is not accepted for donation.
- Hair which is less than 5% grey is also acceptable for donation.
This is our selection of the top organizations where you can donate hair for cancer patients. Donating hair is one of the most basic yet effective ways to improve the lives of those suffering from cancer.
For further details on how to donate your hair to cancer patients, feel free to browse through the official websites of these organizations.
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