Donation to Locks of Love is a family affair

Jackie Arnold and her daughter, Kellie. Photo/Special.

A mother and daughter from Peachtree City decided to make a difference together and collectively cut more than 20 inches of their own hair length to donate to Locks of Love. Locks of Love is a non-profit agency that collects hair donations from around the country and turns them into hair pieces and hair wigs for young patients with medical conditions such as alopecia and cancer. The organization, located in Florida, specifically supports children with hair loss due to medical conditions.

For two years Kellie Camille Arnold, 9, had been pleading to have her hair cut for such an organization. “It would really help the children,” she said, “and it really touches me; I want to do this.”

“Kellie’s hair has been her signature trademark, dangling near half her body length for most of her young years,” said her mother, Jackie Arnold. “I think her hair is beautiful and I really didn’t want her to cut it. Once I knew how serious she was and how important this was to Kellie, I agreed and decided to join her in her giving.”

How serious was Kellie about donating her hair?

Arnold said Kellie had been repeatedly talking about the idea for about a week. One day when she was away on business, Kellie picked up the telephone and made her own appointment.

It might help that Kellie and her mom know the owner of the Glamorama salon, where they both got their new cuts, but at 9 years old, her mom knew that by making her own appointment, Kellie was very sincere in wanting to donate her hair.

Without telling Kellie, mom confirmed the appointment, but for the both of them.

That morning, there were lots of mother/daughter photos snapped. The Glamorama’s retro, pink and black décor made a terrific backdrop for the ‘before’ photos. Kellie had no idea that her mother would soon join her.

Kellie was up first in the styling chair. She was squealing with delight when the scissors snipped the first ponytail. The hair is actually sectioned off into four ponytails for cutting.

The web site www.locksoflove.org has posted a detailed explanation on the process to prepare the ponytail for donation.

And what’s the rule? Measure twice, cut once. Kellie, who has won Beautiful Hair Awards in Georgia pageants, had plenty of hair to donate the required 12 inches and still maintain a bouncy, shoulder-length style. Still she brought her own measuring tape to ensure the proper amount was cut.

She was so proud of her decision and beamed at her reflection of her new hair do. In fact, it immediately seemed to bring out a new, more effervescent personality. And that’s when the surprise was revealed. Salon ladies encouraged, “Mom, you should do it too.”

“Really?” Kellie squealed and clapped her hands in delight.

And soon, Mom had cropped about 12 inches to donate to Locks of Love and was sporting a short stacked wedge cut, as well. The mother/daughter duo got lots of attention and had photos taken all around the studio. You can visit www.Glamorama.com to take a peek of their new looks at the Fayetteville studio.

Most importantly, Kellie said she was very happy to help the sick children. It takes several hair donations to even make one wig, but she is “beaming with pride knowing that her beautiful locks made a difference to make a sick child smile,” said her mom.

Mom is happy to encourage Kellie in her decision and support Kellie for her bravery and unselfishness.

“It’s a great thing to do,” Arnold said, “It didn’t hurt, it helped. Besides, hair grows back. And, it’s very symbolic for me to do this during the Lenten season-it’s not a difficult thing to give up, but it’s dramatic. For me it symbolizes a letting go of things of this world and keeping my focus on what’s important. I’m proud of Kellie for wanting to do this and really delighted we shared this experience together.”

Glamorama offered the haircuts at a special price in support of this effort. The Arnolds prepared the hair for mailing and downloaded the donation form from the website soon after their haircuts.

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