It’s fair to say Serena Kullar’s 13th birthday was a cut above.
The South Surrey girl – who enters Grade 8 at the new Grandview Heights Secondary in September – set out at the end of May to raise $2,000 in support of children suffering hair loss due to cancer or other illness, and she gave herself until her birthday, June 30, to make it happen.
That was also the date she set to get her long, dark locks cut for use in human-hair wigs that are provided to children who need them by Wigs for Kids BC. She’d been growing her hair for two years for that purpose alone.
Following an appeal the week before her self-imposed deadline, when donations were just over the $1,500 mark, Serena not only managed to hit her target, she squeaked past it, raising a total of $2,025.
“It was hard work, but it paid off,” she said Thursday (July 8).
A total of 34 donors pitched in, and Serena said she has thanked each of them with a personal note.
When Peace Arch News first reported on Serena’s mission, the then-12-year-old said she was doing it in honour of family and friends who are going through and have had cancer.
That cause became even more dear just before her birthday when she learned that the four-year-old daughter of a family friend had been diagnosed with leukemia.
She decided to dedicate the funds raised in honour of the youngster.
As for her new style, Serena said brushing her hair is a breeze now that she has 16 inches less of it to worry about.
“It’s very light right now,” she said, noting she can take care of all of it in half the time it used to take to get the tangles out of just one side.
On June 30, stylists at JP Mode divided it into three braids, securing each end with a hair tie in preparation for the cut. The braids were packaged and delivered to Wigs for Kids BC’s Vancouver office the same day by another family friend, Harjit Johal, whose own hair donation three years ago, in support of a friend who was going through chemotherapy, inspired Serena’s pursuit.
Serena said while she may grow and donate her hair again one day – “because it was fun” – for now, she plans to keep it short.
Her mom, Kinder, said the experience was “a good transition” to Serena’s teenage years, and rewarding for herself to watch unfold as a parent.
“She had a goal in mind and she worked hard and she had to do the research,” Kinder said. “I was very proud of her.”
Serena’s fundraising page is still live on the BC Children’s Hospital F. Anyone who would like to donate to her campaign may do so at https://secure.bcchf.ca/SuperheroPages/main.cfm?Event=WigsForKids&Member=165799
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