Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Goulburn Valley women lose ponytails to help cancer patients

Four Goulburn Valley women had their ponytails chopped off so they could be made into wigs for cancer sufferers.

RIAHN SMITH February 24, 2014 4:12am

Echuca's Sue Lewis (front) with Kyla Miniken, Sheena Lewis, Natalie Jalkanen and Natasha Wilson.

Four charitable women are sporting a new ‘do’ today after chopping off their hair for cancer.

Yesterday, the women lopped off their pony-tails so their long locks could be made into wigs for cancer patients.

Shepparton’s Natalie Jalkanen said she wanted to make a contribution after her aunt, Echuca’s Sue Lewis, was diagnosed with cancer in October last year.

Ms Lewis’ hair started to fall out just weeks after her first chemotherapy treatment.

‘‘She decided to be brave and get it shaved off, but losing your hair is a really big thing for a girl,’’ Ms Jalkanen said.

‘‘She was given a wig and that’s something that makes you feel feminine again, it makes you feel like you’re not just a cancer patient.

‘‘For us to be able to donate hair for such a good cause that makes other people feel good about themselves, is great.’’

Also in the hairdresser’s chair yesterday were Ms Jalkanen’s mother Sheena Lewis and her cousin Kyla Miniken from Avenel, while two other relatives took the plunge earlier in the week.

The trio was joined by Tongala teenager Natasha Wilson, a stranger who volunteered her hair for the cause.

‘‘A lot of people in my family have been affected by cancer so I thought it was a nice thing to do,’’ Natasha, 15, said.

The women donated their hair through Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths campaign which has distributed hundreds of wigs since its launch in June last year.

Ms Jalkanen has also helped raise about $2700 for the Breast Cancer Foundation.

Ms Lewis said she was very proud of the women’s efforts.

‘‘It’s a big commitment for those girls to chop their hair off,’’ Ms Lewis said.

‘‘I think they’re just amazing. For Natalie to rally up that kind of support, it’s incredible.’’

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