JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Students at University Heights Intermediate have donated more than 30 feet of hair to children in need the past three years.
Fourth-grade teacher Whitney Clements came up with the idea to have willing students grow out and donate their hair to other kids.
"Children with Hair Loss is a non-profit organization that just gives wigs to children who have illnesses that cause them to lose their hair, so this is something our students were very excited about doing because they wanted to give back," Clements said.
Clements said the idea came to her when she was discussing different fundraisers or possible donations with her students.
One student, in particular, sparked the idea when she told Clements about her grandmother.
"One student talked to me about her grandmother having cancer and it just kind of sparked an interest in me and I decided to do it," Clements said. "So I asked my principal and she thought it was a great idea. That first year we had ten kids."
Clements said the donations not only help the kids that receive them but also the girls who donated their hair.
"The girls know their hair is going to a child that needs it and that it is going to change their life," Clements said.
Clements said it was a big step for some girls to participate in the donation.
"It is hard for kids or even adults to cut their hair and these children are doing something so selfless," she said.
Some girls were even a little uneasy with their new hairdos at first.
"At first, I did not like it, but now I really like it; it is better," third-grade student Avery Toombs said.
The students said knowing their hair is helping others makes it all worth it.
"I wanted to help other people and to make them feel like they are one of us," fourth-grade student Acelen Hart said.
The program has grown so much that they now make donations twice each year.
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