More than a dozen Yeshiva Har Torah students, teachers and mothers participated in a group hair donation. The participants each donated at least 8 inches of hair, which will now be delivered to Zichron Menachem—the Israeli association for the support of children with cancer—to make wigs.
The haircuts were donated by the Fun Salon in West Hempstead, lunch was donated by Hunki’s pizza, Slurpees were donated by 7-Eleven and gift bags were provided by Sarit Ebrani and Talia Levy of Manot4Chai and the school’s PTA.
All told, 21 ponytails were donated, including six ponytails from students and parents who had previously cut their hair and saved it for donation. Plus, the entire school collected money for the charity, which culminated with a special school-wide celebration on Yom Yerushalayim, Jerusalem Day.
Organized by the school’s PTA, the event was the brainchild of a mother who was inspired by her second grader’s desire to donate her hair. She approached the PTA with the idea three months ago.
Rabbi Gary Menchel, Yeshiva Har Torah’s principal, noted that the school is “so proud of our faculty, parents and especially our students, ranging from nursery through eighth grade, who have embraced this extraordinary act of kindness and compassion, which reflects the core of our school’s mission.”
Participants expressed a range of motivations for donating. Maya, a second grader who now sports a summer-ready bob, said that she was inspired by seeing her older sister donate and a desire to “help sick kids look normal until they are strong and healthy enough to grow back their own hair and feel pretty again.”
Orit Lax said that for her and her daughter Adina, donating is “very personal as my husband, Adina’s father, is a cancer survivor. Doing this together is a bonding experience that we are glad to be repeating two years after our last donation.”
Yeshiva Har Torah puts a premium on graduating good students who are also good people. The school builds character through a number of initiatives, including its multidisciplinary middot (character traits) program, iHonor. Each month is devoted to people or things that students honor, such as parents, the environment, food and people who may seem different.
The PTA copresidents said they were touched by everyone who donated to, or participated in, the event and hope to do it again in the future.