You don’t need to have personally experienced hair loss to imagine the devastating effects, especially on children, of an auto immune disorder. At an age when fitting-in means more than it probably should and looks and vanity are keys to social success, hair loss can lead to verbal abuse and even bullying. Alopecia areata effects a large number of teens worldwide. The disease itself is caused by an immune malfunction in which the body is sent signals to attack hair folics until they fall out. Although there are helpful medical designed to combat this type of hair loss, donning a stunning wig is a viable option to regaining the confidence to thrive in social environments.
One hair stylist in Osaka Japan wants to help. Her name is Kiichi Watanabe, and she wants to help children of all ages suffering from hair loss by fitting them with natural looking human hair. She’s already helped over 70 children with her work, offering kids a chance at regaining their norm, their life.
A Bit of Background
Kiichi Watanabe was a beauty salon worker who wanted to give back. She knew children suffered the most embarrassment from hair loss, so in 2009 she founded the Japan Hair Donation & Charity, or JHDC. To date they have given 70 children suffering from immune disease or cancer their confidence back, donating the finest natural looking human hair wigs they might not be able to afford otherwise.
Mrs Watanabe Enjoys Helping Others
Watanabee says: “As a hair stylist, this is something you can do on a volunteer basis. It doesn’t take a special effort.” Mrs Watanabe works with two hair stylists to put together wigs donated by customers who participated in the program in salons across Japan. Recipients of the hair are then visited at home or hospital where wig makers take measurements to design a custome hairpiece.
Mrs Watanabe hopes her selfless work will inspire other stylists to do the same around the world. Millions of children are affected by hair loss, but many parents have trouble affording human hair wigs, as these exclusive hairpieces can cost thousands of pounds.