Chopping locks for cancer

LITTLE Chloe O'Riordan has only recently turned five.

Five-year-old Chloe embraces the spirit of giving

EMPATHY: Chloe O'Riordan, 5, is making a sacrifice to help women with cancer. Picture: LIZ FLEMING

EMPATHY: Chloe O'Riordan, 5, is making a sacrifice to help women with cancer. Picture: LIZ FLEMING

But the smiley girl with long ginger locks is proving that you're never too young to start helping others.

On Wednesday, Chloe will have most of her hair cut off, to be donated to Pantene Beautiful Lengths, a social enterprise that makes wigs out of real hair for women with cancer.

Mother Leah says Chloe latched onto the idea in January, when the two of them were watching a YouTube video about Beautiful Lengths and Chloe decided this was something she wanted to get involved in.

"I've tried to talk to Chloe about cancer and kids and what she's doing is a great thing," Mrs O'Riordan says.

"She says she wants to help the boys and girls with no hair."

"I want to give it to the boys and girls who have cancer," Chloe chips in, evidently well versed in what her endeavour will entail.

Mrs O'Riordan says that she and husband Dan measured Chloe's hair every month since January, to check whether it had reached 20 centimetres in length.

The charity's only rules for accepting hair are that it must be 20 centimetres long and cannot be dyed.

The way I want my kids to be when they're older is to show respect to everybody. - Dan O'Riordan

Originally the couple thought their daughter would change her mind as the day of the big cut came closer, but each time they measured her hair Chloe would burst with excitement at the prospect of donating her lovely locks.

Now Chloe's hair has reached the desired length, she'll undergo the chop on Wednesday and return to kindergarten with a short bob style.

Women undergoing chemotherapy, meanwhile, will be able to wear a thick ginger wig from the five-year-old's former ponytail.

Chloe's father Dan says he couldn't be prouder of his first-born child.

"I was shocked when I heard what she wanted to do!" he says.

"But I'm proud of her.

"The way I want my kids to be when they're older is to show respect to everybody.

"Everybody should be treated the same.

"I think it's great that a kid this age is thinking about other people."

Mrs O'Riordan agrees.

"People have to look after each other - giving is the best thing," she says.

"We don't have much, but it doesn't matter if you have nothing; you can always give."

For more information on Pantene Beautiful Lengths, please go to www.pantenebeautifullenghts.com.au, where you can make a pledge or learn more about it.

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