‘Headbands of Hope’ raise awareness of childhood cancer through fashion

Published by adviser, Author: Emma Pfeifer - Asst. Campus Life Editor, Date: September 10, 2015
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Headbands of Hope is an organization that is geared towards helping the fight to end childhood cancer and spreading hope to the children that are going through chemotherapy and losing their hair.

The organization has a website that people can visit to purchase headbands. For every headband purchased, one is given to a child with cancer, and $1 is donated to fund childhood cancer research. Along with a dollar being donated, a child with cancer receives a headband that is usually hand delivered by someone in the organization.

The organization was created by Jessica Ekstrom in April of 2012. As a girl, Ekstrom had a dream to help children feel beautiful. She came to Slippery Rock in the spring, and spoke on the organizations behalf in hopes to gather more members and spread the word.

Kelsey Graham, senior public relations major,  said that she was inspired to join the organization after Ekstrom came and spoke.  Since then, she has become the outreach intern for Headbands of Hope.  She is in charge of setting up hospital donations with the little boys and girls as well as overseeing the Campus Representative Program.

Since the organization first started, they have donated headbands to every children’s hospital in the United States. This organization is not a typical club at Slippery Rock, there are no meetings held on campus, however there is a Facebook group chat once you are a member. The organization has campus representatives throughout the United States who spread the goal of Headbands of Hope in communities.  Graham explained that their main goal is to make the students of the university aware of the organization as well as to sell the headbands.

Another member of the organization, Andrea Tracey, senior public relations major, said that being a part of the organization is “all what you make of it.” Promoting the organization online and spreading awareness is a necessity and a part of a member’s job. The representatives of the organization can hold events to promote it.

“As a member of Phi Sigma Sigma, I am utilizing my organization to help me wtih this amazing charity,” Tracey said.

Headbands of Hope is partnered with four childhood cancer research organizations including: St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital, St. Baldrick’s Foundation, Alex’s Lemonade Stand, and Cure Childhood Cancer. The web address to visit this organization’s site is: www.headbandsofhope.com. Any person can get a dollar off, if the promo code “kelseyhope” is used.

The site has a variety of headbands for both boys, girls and adults that can be purchased. The headbands can be given as gifts to whoever or they can be bought for personal wear.

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