A woman from an Alaskan town is helping turn kids with cancer into real-life Disney princesses with her wig project.
Holly Christensen - a former cancer nurse living in Palmer, Alaska - began her "Magic Yarn Project" after her friend's daughter was diagnosed with cancer, thinking how difficult it would be for the girl aged two. From there she has created special "princess" wigs and recruited volunteers for the cause.
"It's so heart-wrenching and life-changing to work in cancer," she said, recalling the time last fall when one of her college friends' child was diagnosed with the condition. "She's such a girly girl and loves princesses and is about to lose her long beautiful hair."
In hopes of cheering the child up, Christensen created a long wig a la Rapunzel's braided locks using yellow yarn. She learned to create the princess-themed hairstyles while working on her own daughters' Halloween costumes, dressing up as Queen Elsa and Princess Anna of hit Disney movie "Frozen."
Another family then asked for a wig for their child stricken with cancer. According to the Christensen, traditional wigs are not a good fit for some cancer patients. The chemotherapy turns their skin very sensitive and tender, she said. The "Magic Yarn Project" makes wigs composed of extra-soft "baby" yarn turned into beanies, making for warm and comfortable head coverings.
It has since become a full-blown mission for the fairy godmother of princess wigs, establishing a workshop and others to support or volunteer for the cause. A group that have expressed interest to help, include a craft club from a female prison.
The team is currently working on a variety of wigs, including those of Elsa and Anna, Ariel, Rapunzel, Jasmine, and Belle of Disney feature films. The wigs are distributed free to pediatric cancer patients in various hospitals in the United States. And it's not all princess hairstyles, but also customized designs such as a rainbow wig Christensen created for a 4-year-old.
To fund the supplies, shipping costs, and logistics of the project, a GoFundMe page has been set up and has received over $5,200 in donations to date. People are called to lend support to "provide a magical escape from a child's post-chemo world."
To "like" the Magic Yarn Project on Facebook, click here.