Six Quinn Elementary students embody spirit of kindness

By Shenandoah Briere | May 12, 2018
Courtesy of: Elizabeth Voci Alyssa Goulart getting her hair cut.

Classroom lessons in humility and gratitude learned at Quinn Elementary School inspired six students to make an important donation to those in need: their hair.

The students -- Alyssa Goulart, Kyla Martin, Remy Barber, Ella Salvador, Elizabeth Santos and Lily Salvador and teacher Elizabeth Voci -- all went to Salon En Vogue Organic Spa on May 9 to try a new hairstyle and donate the resulting hair to Children with Hair Loss.

Voci is no stranger to cutting her locks for the benefit of others, as she had done so eight times and twice while working at Quinn. She offered the idea up to the students in the beginning of the year and the group of friends immediately jumped at the idea of giving back.

“To see the kids be excited about something all year long and have that build up and the excitement and for them to feel like they’ve given a piece of themselves to other kids it’s something that allows them to really give back in a way that’s personal to them,” Voci said.

Children with Hair Loss is a nonprofit organization which takes donated locks of hair and turns them into wigs to give to kids with hair loss. The goal is to make them feel empowered and beautiful again.

Giving up their hair to make wigs was a first for all of the girls except Goulart, who cut 10 inches off last year. This year she cut off 12 inches. She said it makes her happy seeing the joy she can bring to others.

“For kids it’s a hard thing for them to be generous on their own because they have to get money,” Voci said. “If they want to donate money somewhere, they have to get it from their parents, if they want to do something they need adult support in it, but for hair donation it’s a piece of themselves that they can give to another child.”

The rest of the group donated at least eight inches of hair. Barber said she was nervous seeing what the haircut would look like, but it didn’t matter because “everyone is beautiful just the way they are.”

Getting used to short hair hasn’t been too hard for the girls, as it is helpful in with both playing sports and keeping it maintained.

Being friends and doing good together was something Barber said brought them closer and made it more exciting. Ella Salvador agreed and added just being able to help someone makes it worth it.

“It’s sort of like nice to do it because you feel like you’re helping someone,” she said. “Like, you don’t know the person but you feel like you’re helping them.”

Ella Salvador, Kyla Martin and Remy Barber hold the locks of hair they donated. (Courtesy of: Elizabeth Voci)
Kayla Martin gets eight inches of hair cut off. (Courtesy of: Elizabeth Voci)
The six girls and teacher (center) who donated their hair to be used to create wigs. (Photo by: Shenandoah Briere)
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