Maria Jones, a sophomore at St. Maria Goretti High School in Hagerstown, recently cut her 12-inch pony tail to donate to Locks of Love.
It was the third time Maria, the president of her class, has donated her hair to the nonprofit organization, which provides custom-made hair prosthesis for children who have permanent hair loss due to a medical condition.
“I love growing my hair long, but when I’m ready to get it cut, I measure it to see if it is at least 10 inches,” Maria said. “If not, I keep growing it so I can donate it to a sick child, rather than just having it thrown away.”
It takes Maria three years to grow her hair long enough to qualify for a donation to Locks of Love. She first became interested in donating hair in elementary school after a conversation with her mother.
Maria helped organize a group of St. Maria Goretti High School students to join the “Light the Night Walk” earlier this school year for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. The walk aims to give cancer patients hope while raising funds for research and other services.
Maria is an honor student and a member of the swim team who also participates in drama and dance.