They launch Christmas campaign to donate hair to women with cancer of strata 1, 2 and 3

Ingrid Sánchez is 33 years old, she loves to dress in red and it relaxes her to paint. In 2020, unfortunately, I join the group of 15,000 women who are diagnosed with breast cancer annually in Colombia, of which, according to statistics, more than 4,000 lose their lives.

“From one day to the next I went bald. After the first chemotherapy I lost all my hair not only hair, but also eyebrows, eyelashes and even nails. It was a surprising and painful process. I was very scared because for me cancer was equal to death. No one can imagine how devastating and shocking it is to receive this diagnosis and then find out that I also had to lose my breast ”, says Ingrid Sánchez, moved, patient diagnosed with breast cancer in January 2020.

Ingrid belongs to that group of women who manages to win the battle. But, as in any war, there are losses and sequelae such as decreased physical and mental strength, intolerance to certain smells and foods, pain in the body, changes in mood, and although it seems a triviality in that list of negative consequences, it weighs too much hair loss.

“The whole situation is really terrible. Not having the strength to do anything after being so productive, feel the affected familySeeing the children without understanding everything that is happening, being so scared and not enough, losing everything that defined me physically as a woman is very painful and without financial resources is an even more intense and sensitive reality ”, explains Sánchez.

Ingrid Sánchez, the woman who received the first donation. Photo: Courtesy Fincomercio

In November and December while millions of Colombians prepare their trips and Christmas parties, 2,500 will be diagnosed with breast cancer; Aware of this reality, a renowned savings cooperative celebrates its anniversary doing what it has done for 64 years, changing lives and fulfilling the dreams of millions of Colombians.

This time with an emotional campaign called “Donate your hair, change lives”, seeks to invite Colombians to donate hair in usable conditions to manufacture wigs that will be delivered to cancer patients of strata 1,2 and 3, for whom to pay the 2, 3 and up to 6 million pesos that a natural hair wig costs it is absolutely impossible; finally he will deliver the hair to the Ámese Association, an expert in giving emotional support to cancer patients.

The length must be at least 25 centimeters, it does not matter if the hair is straight, frizzy, gray, with keratin or dyed, everyone is welcome. It should not be picked up from the floor in a hairdresser because it does not work, nor be packed wet in plastic bags. It should be cut when making a ponytail and immediately gathered with a rubber band.

“We are going to take care of collecting the hair, taking it to our ally and taking care that the wigs are made by a family of master craftsmen who for half a century they only work with natural hair, because we want the wig that each woman receives to be a symbol of support, solidarity and love in a donation made with the best of the best ”, she says excitedly, Gloria Gutierrez, assistant manager of the cooperative.

The Unknown World of Human Hair Wigs

Maybe you are part of those millions of Colombians who they ignore all the work involved and behind a natural hair wig, that is more than 200 hours of work if the process is in charge of 5 people, but even a whole month if the process is carried out by a single person.

The most revealing fact is that donations of hair from 9-10 women to complete a single wig. The reason is that in each donation the average hair is 40 to 50 grams and a wig, depending on the length, requires between 450 and 500 grams. Additionally, in each donation in the selection process of healthy hairs, about 30% to 40%.

“I spent more than 50 years in the art of making wigs, prostheses and extensions with natural hair, therefore, I know firsthand the sadness and pain in which women fall when they go bald. There are some who lock themselves up for months in a deep sadness from which they come out smiling when they finally receive their new hair ”, explains Jorge Sarmiento, creator of wigs for cancer patients. “Some have told me that they find it worse to lose their hair than a breast because the absence of the breast is covered by dressing while the hair it is very visible”He added.