Members First Credit Union manager donates hair to help kids with hair loss

Hair loss can be devastating, with emotional, physical and psychological effects that impact a person’s confidence and well-being. It is especially hard on children and teens. Maggie’s Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan hopes to make the situation better by offering wigs to any child under the age of 18 with a wig made of real hair at no cost to them.

Recently, Melanie Duke, a Members First Credit Union branch manager, decided to donate to the cause by shaving her head and donating all of her hair. Duke went to Grondins in Mt. Pleasant to have them prepare her donation, eventually shaving her head. Duke was excited to share the experience as part of MFCU’s Community Difference Project.

Inspired by her plan, MFCU locations helped collect donations for Michigan Wigs for Kids and had fun raising awareness by wearing wigs on select days during February.

The effort was a personal one, spurred by someone close to her receiving a cancer diagnosis.Maggie's Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan provides wigs and supplies at no cost to children.

“It was my 38th birthday and another one of my coworkers had just been diagnosed with breast cancer,” says Duke. “This had been the third person in three years I’ve known that has received a diagnosis. I thought about all of the people in my life that have been touched by cancer, close friends who had lost their daughter to cancer WAY to young, and another coworker and her family’s battle with childhood cancer. It was just overwhelming.”

Duke said the decision was an easy one to make when she saw an inspiring video online. “Someone shared an amazing video on Facebook about Maggie’s Wigs 4 Kids of Michigan. I went to the organizations website, researched and learned about some of the illnesses and contributing factors to children’s hair loss,” says Duke.

“I love helping local businesses and other Michiganders, especially children. I decided I would grow out my hair for two years until I turned 40, then donate it. It wasn’t until recently that I decided to go all in and donate every last inch that I could. I am so excited to be able to support this amazing organization that is helping children smile!”

MFCU encouraged Duke in her donation and giving journey and branch locations held fundraisers through the Community Difference Project, eventually raising $400 to donate in addition to Duke’s hair donation.

The Community Difference Project was started on the foundation of the credit union’s philosophy of “people helping people.” The staff members are committed and passionate about living this philosophy by providing non-profit organizations support through monetary donations, random acts of kindness and volunteering. Visit the MFCU Community Difference Project site for more information.

If you or someone you know would like to donate to Maggie’s Wigs 4 Kids there are plenty of ways to get involved including volunteering, donating hair, hosting a fundraiser or donating funds. You can find out more information on their website.

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