Salon makes the cut with sick kids

Cut-a-thon will collect hair and funds for Wigs for Kids

Lizzy Lee and Me salon manager Caroline Woodbridge clips a ponytail that will be used to make a child’s wig.

Lizzy Lee and Me salon manager Caroline Woodbridge clips a ponytail that will be used to make a child’s wig.

A hair salon helps provide a bit of comfort for children dealing with hair loss as a result of medical treatment.

Lizzy Lee and Me, in the Shelbourne Plaza, just outside Oak Bay, holds its fourth annual cut-a-thon for Wigs for Kids Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

“It’s to support children and their families who are going through any kind of medical treatment where the medicine causes them to lose their hair,” said salon manager Caroline Woodbridge.

The cut-a-thon concept came from salon owner Lisette Scabar, a cancer survivor. First diagnosed at the age of 20, she returned home to live with her mother while she underwent intensive chemotherapy. She lost all of her hair in just a few weeks.

“At first it wasn’t so bad being bald,” she said. “After a while I just felt like a break from all of the attention this attracted, plus it was pretty chilly outside.”

But the real challenges were financial, as her mother had to take a leave of absence from work to look after her. “I remember it was a real struggle to come up with the $800 that was needed if I was going to purchase a wig, and this was the subsidized rate,” said Scabar, adding Wigs for Kids wasn’t around then to help families with the cost.

The cut-a-thon will take ponytails with at least nine inches of healthy hair and send them to Wigs for Kids to be used in wigs.

“But I would like to stress that the monetary donation part of this is as important as the hair,” said Woodbridge.

All of the money raided during Friday’s cut-a-thon goes to Wigs for Kids to help cover the $800 cost to purchase a wig. Wigs for Kids also helps pay for essential drugs and feeding supplies for children that are not covered by MSP.

The cost is $49.99 for adults and $39.99 for children under 14, and includes a consultation, wash, restyle and keepsake photo.

Woodbridge said about 20 people had their hair cut at last year’s event, with the most memorable cut coming a few days later.

She said a man who read about the cut-a-thon in the paper came into the salon for a haircut and later made a $2,400 donation that allowed three families to obtain a wig for their child.

Lizzy Lee and Me is located beside Fairway Market in the Shelbourne Plaza, 3655 Shelbourne St. It is suggested you make an appointment first by calling 250-590-5568.