Student Health is working with the charity group Locks of Love, a nonprofit organization that uses donated hair to make wigs for children with medical hair loss. The program makes hairpieces affordable to those who would normally be unable to purchase one. Hair donations, which should be brought to the Student Health information desk, should be 10 inches or longer, clean and dry, bundled into a ponytail or a braid and free from chemical damage. Dyed hair is accepted, but not bleached hair.

“It’s just hair to us, but it can really make a difference for children who need it,” said Lindsay Groark, drive organizer.

According to the Locks of Love website, the hairpieces – which are secure enough to allow for swimming and sports – are custom-made to fit each child’s head.

Besides leading the Locks of Love program at Student Health, Groark, a fourth-year biopsychology major, is the patient advocate at Student Health. As part of her position, she said, she is required to create a project or sponsor an outreach program. She said Aleisa Pfau, public relations manager at Student Health, is assisting her with the coordination of the program.

According to the Locks of Love website, the retail price for hairpieces normally runs between $3,500 and $6,000.

“[Locks of Love] provides hairpieces free or at a low cost, depending on the family’s income,” Groark said.

Groark said students have all quarter to donate their hair, and many have enthusiastically done so.

“People can make donations until the first week of Winter Quarter, when we send in the shipment,” Groark said. “We’ve gotten 25 donations so far. There’s even been a lot of guys interested.”

Groark said Locks of Love accepts hair year-round, and people may donate even after she sends the shipment.

“Anybody who’s interested: Keep growing your hair,” Groark said. “Don’t be afraid to cut it.”