21 students, teachers “donate eight” for Service Learning’s hair drive

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Brenda Mehdian, staff writer

The crowd watched as students lined up to support a charitable cause at the front lawn on Tuesday, April 19. During lunch the student body supported Service Learning’s annual hair donation drive, sponsored by Pantene Beautiful Lengths.

According to co-chair senior Leora Hakim, due to the success of last year’s hair donation, she and fellow co-chairs junior Davina Shoumer and senior Tori Hertz began planning the event earlier than they had last year. The three had to work together to contact sponsors, find a hair stylist, make a facebook event page and work together on the hardest part: convince the potential donors to donate their hair.

“I know a lot of girls have a special attachment to their hair (and I did too before I donated my hair last year). But if you take a minute and just think about it, these women battle cancer and have absolutely no hair. Your hair will grow back, theirs won’t.” For me, it was a no brainer… my grandmother is a breast cancer survivor so I felt an obligation [to do this].” Hakim said.

Although Hakim believes that last year’s event was successful, she also believes that this year surpassed last year’s event.

“Last year a lot of people signed up, but many decided not to go through with the donation on the spot. This year I think more than half of the girls decided to stick to their decision and donate their hair; it was pretty amazing,” Hakim said.

Furthermore, Hakim also attributes this year’s success to the experience she gained from planning the event last year on the committee.

“This was my second year on the hair donation committee,  so the things that seemed so complicated to me last year now seem simple. We also had a bigger committee and more time to plan the best event possible,” Hakim said.

Service Learning hoped that 18 students would donate hair and, to their pleasure, 21 students ended up donating. One of those students, junior Gabriella Shofet, felt confident about her donation.

“I wanted to cut my hair since last year but didn’t feel confident enough to wear short hair. Once I realized who I would be helping, and how someone who’s gone through so much and needed my hair more than I did, my gut told me to go for it. I’m pretty sure this was one of the best decisions I’ve made in a long time,” Shofet said.

Some other students who donated were a bit more apprehensive to chop of their locks, like Dveirin.

“Before I sat down to cut my hair I was excited, and then during the process I was really scared, and then right after my hair was actually cut off I thought to myself, ‘Oh no, it’s so short,’ but now I like my hair,” Dveirin said.

Donors were not only limited to the student body. Faculty members such as librarian Karen Boyarsky and math teacher Elaina Reilly also donated.

Many of the donors say they would donate again.

“I would absolutely donate again. It’s a pretty awesome thing knowing you’re helping someone who’s fighting cancer, [which is]  something so much bigger than any of my possible short hair problems [could cause],” junior Olivia Koshy said.

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