One of the first thing people often want to know upon hearing that someone they love has cancer is how they can help. But when Cheryl Buick, a baker from Northern Ireland, told her daughters that she was ill with a rare form of stomach cancer, their heartwarming response went above and beyond.
Reporting on the story, BelfastLive explains how the four girls from Dunmurry, pictured below, were so moved by their mum’s plight that they decided to donate some of their hair. Each had their long locks cut in order to donate their hair to the well-known children's hair loss charity, Little Princess Trust.
The subject of cancer-related hair loss obviously struck home; while Cheryl says she was lucky not to lose too much hair during her treatment, chemotherapy drugs and radiation treatments are known to cause hairloss for many cancer patients of all ages. Continues below
The four girls Macy, Mia, Molly and Madison (11, 9, 6 and 4 years of age, respectively) knew they wanted to do something to help and found inspiration online. “They looked up The Little Princess Trust and asked if they could get their hair cut,” Cheryl told BelfastLive.
The Little Princess Trust is a remarkable charity, set up in memory of five-year-old Hannah Tarplee, a schoolgirl from Hereford who lost her life to cancer in 2005. It is currently celebrating its 10 year anniversary.
As well as providing real-hair wigs for children who have lost their hair during cancer treatment, the Little Princess Trust also offer help to children whose hair loss has been caused by Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune disorder.
The charity welcomes both real hair donations to be turned into wigs, as well of course as cash, which is much-needed for funding. The four Buick sisters were able to help on both counts. Macy donated 17 inches of hair, while Mia and Molly gave 18 inches each. Madison the youngest, with the least amount of hair-growing time under her belt was still able to give an impressive nine inches.
A further £217 was raised on the day of their big cut thanks to various fundraising events including a spirited slog on an exercise bike by the girls’ brother, Thomas and the kind family's group total has since swelled to £865.
Hair loss in adults will generally right itself naturally in up to 12 months, in cases of temporary hair loss conditions including post-chemotherapy alopecia. For permanent conditions such as male pattern baldness, or those which can come and go, like alopecia areata, specialist hair loss treatment courses can be devised to promote regrowth. However, these options are only available to those aged 16 years and over.
For children with hair loss the treatment options are often few and far between so charities providing support, comfort and, in the case of the Little Princess Trust, free wigs, are invaluable.
The Belgravia Centre is a world-renowned group of a hair loss clinic in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation from anywhere in the world for home-use treatment.
View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world's largest gallery of hair growth photos and demonstrates the level of success that so many of Belgravia's patients achieve.