Meet HeadWrappers – a charity giving free support, advice and gorgeous headscarves to anyone experiencing hair loss as part of cancer treatment.
What does Headwrappers do?
Often the aftercare for people who lose their hair during chemotherapy or other cancer treatments can be quite basic. You might get a wig or a hat, but most people are unfamiliar with how to style this new headwear so that it feels flattering and comfortable. HeadWrappers aim to change that, by sharing their knowledge of scarves, hats and hairpieces as an alternative to standard wigs.
The specially trained volunteers have some amazing tips and tricks up their sleeves for tying and accessorising headscarves, and they also offer great practical advice on how to look after your hair and scalp before, during and after treatment.
The charity currently offers individual and group sessions in three centres in London – Maggie’s Cancer Support Centre in Charing Cross Hospital; BMI Bishops Wood Hospital, Northwood; and the MacMillan Cancer Support Centre at the East Surrey Hospital, Redhill.
Who are Headwrappers?
HeadWrappers was founded by a group of volunteers who originally worked with another charity, Breast Cancer Care. Cris, Julie and Karyn were part of a team who provided support and tips for people going through hair loss, then known as HeadStrong. When Breast Cancer Care ran out of funding for the Headstrong service in 2016, Cris, Julie and Karyn couldn’t let the service end.
They felt that there was a real need for those who were experiencing hair loss to be fully supported at what could be a really distressing time. So the three of them formed their own independent charity to keep their good work going, and HeadWrappers was born.
What will my HeadWrappers appointment involve?
Every HeadWrappers appointment lasts an hour, and is run by a trained volunteer who understands the impact of losing your hair. At your first appointment you’ll receive a free headscarf of your choice, and you’ll learn some new techniques for tying it in a variety of shapes and styles, helping you to find one that makes you feel more confident. You’ll also be able to try on a range of scarves, hats and hairpieces, which your volunteer can help you to order if you’d like.
The session will also include some hair and scalp care advice tailored to your stage of treatment or hair loss. And of course, your hour with HeadWrappers is a safe place to talk as much or as little as you’d like about your experience of hair loss, what it means to you, and how you’ve been coping with cancer treatment. The volunteers all understand what it’s like to go through cancer, treatment and hair loss, and with their knowledge of cancer services, they can give guidance on other sources of support that might appeal to you.
How do I contact HeadWrappers?
To find out more about HeadWrappers and the work they do, visit the HeadWrappers website.
If you’d like to enquire about an appointment, or just speak to someone from the service for more information, you can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 020 3633 4713
You can also keep up to date on HeadWrappers sessions near you on the HeadWrappers Facebook page.