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The Corinne Fund
World of Wigs recently had the opportunity to meet an extraordinary woman. Corinne Neal contacted us in the hopes of starting a fund to assist a friend who was in need of a custom gray wig. After long hours of research, Corinne found that gray human hair is a rarity. Her idea was to spread the word to women across the country with gray hair to donate their locks for women in need of custom human hair gray wigs. Corinne contacted World of Wigs and spoke to Renee, the Director of our Custom Department. Renee and Corinne formulated a plan and created the “Corinne Fund”.


Renee (left) from World of Wigs accepts Corinne's hair donation for the "Corinne Fund".

World of Wigs is accepting any donations of gray hair and/or monetary donations (either by check or credit card) that will be applied towards the Corinne Fund. In addition, World of Wigs is donating over $1300 in products and services towards the Fund.

Due to the interest the Corinne Fund has created, World of Wigs is now offering the opportunity for others to start a Fund for themselves, a friend or family member in need of a custom wig. For more information on how to set up a Wig Fund, please contact us or visit WigFund.com.


Original article from The Orange County Register:
Friday, March 14, 2008

Woman loses silver locks for a good cause

Corinne Neal, 68, had 15 inches of her gray-white tresses cut off to use for a wig for friend who lose her hair to cancer.

By ANNIE BURRIS
The Orange County Register

HUNTINGTON BEACH A small crowd gathered this morning to watch Corinne Neal chop off about 15 inches of her silver locks at HB Beauty Supply and Salon.

The 68-year-old retired school teacher held up ponytails of her lopped-off gray-white hair and, with tears in her eyes, yelled, "Woo-Hoo!"

"It is empowering, I guess, to know that it has all come together," Neal said, her voice shaking. "That prayers have been answered and we're getting this started."

Neal plans to use her hair to begin a campaign to raise money and collect more gray hair to create a wig for a 68-year-old woman at her church who recently lost her hair to cancer. She said a handful of friends have already contacted her, saying they are beginning to grow their hair to help make the wig.

A cancer survivor herself, Neal had originally wanted to donate her hair to Locks of Love but was told the hair-donation organization provides wigs for children and does not accept gray hair. Calling that "discrimination against the Grannies and Grandpas,'' she has struck out on her own to provide a gray wig for her friend.

To make the headpiece, Neal needs about three times the amount of hair she cut today and about $3,000 to have a wig made at World of Wigs in Santa Ana. When the wig is done, Neal plans to surprise her friend with it.

That's just the beginning, she said. She hopes her campaign will lead to more awareness and efforts to provide gray wigs for seniors.

About a dozen members of Neal's Red Hat Society group – a team of woman 50 years and older who band together to socialize — came to the hair cutting.

Stylist and fellow Red Hat member Pam Espinosa cut Neal's hair to match Spice Girl Victoria Beckham's bob while friends sat behind Neal to watch.

"I think it is a wonderful idea," said Red Hat member Lovanna Powell, who lives in Riverside. "There are a lot of older people that need hair just like young ones."


A NEW LOOK: Corinne Neal has a look in the mirror after cutting her hair to benefit a cancer patient. Her fellow Red Hat Society members pictured in the background came to lend their support.

MARK MARTINEZ,
THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER
Corinne Neal

City: Huntington Beach

Family: Son, Ken Neal, 46; daughter, Natalie Neal, 48; step-grandson, Brandon Sapsarah, 21.

Pastimes: Traveling, shopping and gardening.

Job: Taught special needs and learning-handicapped students for 30 years. Retired in 2003.

Goals: Get more hair and funds for gray hair wigs and scuba dive at the Great Barrier Reef.

How to donate to the gray wigs

Corinne Neal needs three times the amount of hair she cut and about $3,000 to make the gray wig.

To donate hair: Contributor needs at least 12 inches of gray or salt-and-pepper hair only.

To donate money: Contributors can make checks out to World of Wigs and in the memo write "Corinne Neal fund." The store also accepts credit and debit cards.

Need a wig? Call World of Wigs at 714-547-4461.

Neal began to grow her hair long three years ago when she was diagnosed with melanoma on her left arm. The cancer was removed without treatment that would have caused her to lose her hair. She said he felt lucky to still have her hair and was inspired to help others.

But when she researched hair donations, she was told that organizations that give wigs to cancer patients – such as Locks of Love and Pantene Beautiful Lengths – do not accept gray hair.

"My thought was, 'Hey, we are left out,'" Neal said in a previous interview. "There shouldn't be any discrimination."

Officials with the organizations said they simply could not use the hair because it was too brittle or did not fit with their mission.

"I agree with Corinne wholeheartedly that there ought to be some organization that is willing to collect gray hair for wigs," said Red Hat member Audrey Ekstrom from Huntington Beach.

"You don't want to wear a red wig or a brown wig or everyone knows immediately that she has lost all of her hair. …most of the cancer patients I know would just as soon not talk about it."

Contact the writer: aburris@ocregister.com or 714-445-6696


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