• November 28, 2014

Long-locked locals donate hair to wigs for children

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Posted: Sunday, August 12, 2007 12:00 pm | Updated: 4:54 pm, Wed Aug 15, 2012.

By Desiree Johnson

Killeen Daily Herald

When 14-year-old Rebeka Wiggins and her mother, Lori Wiggins, planned to cut their hair for the famous charity Locks of Love, they weren't expecting much more than a new hairstyle and the warm, fuzzy feeling you get when you help out a charitable cause.

The charity collects hair in ponytails or braids and uses them to create wigs and hairpieces for children who have lost their hair due to illness. When the Wigginses researched Locks of Love, they were disappointed in what they found.

"We learned that Locks of Love very rarely gives their wigs to chemotherapy children," Lori Wiggins said. "Since we have several relatives who are cancer survivors, we did not feel good about that."

The mother-daughter duo then discovered an organization, Wigs for Kids, that gives away hairpieces and wigs to a wider range of children.

"Locks of Love is misknown for chemotherapy patients, and you have to buy their wigs," Wiggins said. "Wigs (for Kids) gives them away with no differentiation of medical conditions or financial need."

After becoming aware of Wigs for Kids, the Wigginses discovered that the organization has been working for many years with the Girl Scouts of America, of which Rebeka is a junior member.

The two approached Rebeka's Girl Scout leader, who then took the idea to the local offices.

It was decided that Rebeka could earn leadership and community service credit toward her silver award by hosting an event. Earning her silver award would bring her one step closer to earning the gold award, the Girl Scouts' highest honor, equivalent to the Boy Scouts' Eagle Scout.

"Rebeka wrote an article for publication in local newspapers and organized the event with the owner of the College of Cosmetology, who was happy to work with us," Wiggins said.

"It inspired her and made her want to give more to others. It was an eye-opener for her that one 14-year-old can make an impact by telling one person and going from there."

For $6, all of which was donated to Wigs for Kids, any person with hair longer than 10 inches could come by and leave with a stylish new hairdo. The event, which was held Saturday from 1 to 3 p.m., was for, quite literally, everyone.

"I even managed to convince an Eagle Scout to come in and cut off his 12 inches of bright red hair for us," Wiggins laughed. "Plus, the whole event is bringing awareness to the fact that not all Girl Scouts are little girls. There are older Girl Scouts, too."

Among volunteers wanting to get a new look was Heather Nolt, a Killeen resident whose daughter Jerrica Nolt is a friend of Rebeka Wiggins.

"This is my fourth time donating my hair. My beautician and friend originally brought it up, and I went for it. I don't care if my hair is long or short, and it's a wig for someone who needs it," Nolt said. "Knowing the hair is going to help someone just gives me a warm feeling inside."

The College of Cosmetology volunteers were grateful for the extra cutting practice.

"It's really awesome," said Carmen Sepulveda, a cosmetology student who cut 15 inches off Jerrica Nolt's waist-long hair. "It's a really nice thing that they're doing, and I'm glad to be a part of it."

Lori Wiggins hopes that the event is continued by future Junior Girl Scout generations.

"Rebeka will probably do this again next year for her silver award project. Then, maybe another Girl Scout will pick it up and do it each year," Wiggins said.

For more information on Wigs for Kids and how to donate ponytails from home, check out

www.wigsforkids.org.

Contact Desiree Johnson at djohnson@kdhnews.com or call 501-7559

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