These amazing, homemade wigs are helping kids with cancer regain their identities after losing their hair.
Alaska mom and former oncology nurse Holly Christensen knows that chemotherapy treatment can make a person's skin sensitive to typical wigs after hair loss. So when her friend's 3-year-old daughter Lily was diagnosed with cancer two years ago, she took a soft beanie and created a wig of yarn that transformed the princess-loving little girl into a Rapunzel look-alike. From there, her princess wigs took flight, and the non-profit The Magic Yarn Project was born.
The princess who first inspired it all! Princess Lily was the first to receive a Rapunzel wig after her lymphoma had relapsed. She loved it so much and it brought such magic and fun to both her and her family's lives, that we decided to make more wigs for other cancer fighters and "The Magic Yarn Project" was born. 5 and a half months later, we have involved thousands of volunteers and have made over 350 wigs that have been sent to cancer fighters all over the world. 💖 #magicissomethingyoumake #themagicyarnproject #curechildhoodcancer
A post shared by @themagicyarnproject on Mar 14, 2016 at 10:05pm PDT
Now, along with Bree Hitchcock, Christensen and her network of over 3,500 volunteers have distributed homespun wigs to kids with cancer in 29 countries. The wigs, which are available to mimic the hair of Disney princesses—including Elsa, Ariel, Belle, Cinderella, and Anna—are all made with donated time and money. But they provide more than just magic and fun for their little wearers; these princess wigs in many cases give kids their senses of self back in the midst of their terrifying cancer journeys. "We have discovered that while these wigs mean a lot to kids, they also mean a lot to their families and parents as they get to witness their child smile and play again, forgetting if but for a moment that they even have cancer," founder Holly Christensen told Parents.com. "One mother wrote us: 'These are so much more than yarn. They are moments of innocence and childhood. They are part of the healing process for families. They are bringers of magic!'"
We call this picture the "Cancer picked the wrong princess" picture! These sure are some strong and brave princesses and we love helping them smile and play during their tough battle! 💪🏼💖 #magicissomethingyoumake #curechildhoodcancer #themagicyarnproject
A post shared by @themagicyarnproject on Mar 14, 2016 at 10:01pm PDT
According to Today.com, each empowering creation takes between 1 and 4 hours to make, and uses 5 to 10 ounces of yarn. The Magic Yarn Project also provides pirate wigs and superhero beanies to boys and girls battling cancer.
As the project's Instagram details, these wigs put smiles on the faces of the many strong and brave kids who receive them. And clearly these creations-from-the-heart provide a much-needed confidence boost to children who need it most.
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Melissa Willets is a writer, mom and coffee devotee. Find her on Facebook where she chronicles her life momming under the influence. Of yoga.