We won’t give up …

For those of our friends that have been Salon Khouri enthusiasts for a few years, you know our passion and the story and names behind our passion for childhood cancer awareness. This past year has seen tremendous strides being made, but there is still a lot of work to do. Here are a few stats borrowed from our friends at The Truth 365:

  • Cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in children and adolescents in the United States. (Source: National Cancer Institute)
  • One out of every 300 males and one out of every 333 females in America will develop cancer before their 20th birthday. (Source: American Society of Clinical Oncology)
  • More than 40,000 children undergo treatment for cancer each year. (Source: CureSearch)
  • Approximately 20 percent of all children with cancer will die for their disease, a secondary cancer,  or complications from treatment. (National Cancer Institute)
  • Incidence of invasive pediatric cancers is up 29% in the past 20 years. (Source: National Cancer Institute)
  • In the last 20 years, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved only two pediatric cancer drugs—Clolar (clofarabine) and Erwinaze (asparaginase Erwinia chrysanthemi)—that were initially studied in children. Other drugs for children’s cancers were first studied in or approved for adults with cancer. (American Association for Cancer Research)
  • Cancer treatments can affect a child’s growth, fertility, and endocrine system. Child survivors may be permanently immunologically suppressed. (Source: National Cancer Institute)

There are more facts, but reading just these few is hard enough. And that’s sort of the predicament these children are in. Childhood cancer is scary. It’s not easy to look at, and it’s certainly not easy to see photos of children battling the disease. Finding a way to rally in a positive way is often difficult, particularly when a child is terminal. And that’s why we chose to support this cause more than once last year and again this year. We feel more people need to know the truth about childhood cancers. Many times, it’s the parents of the children fighting who are out raising awareness. That’s just not fair to them. They have such a heavy load — it is our responsibility to pick up the banner and march on their behalf.

If you think childhood cancer is rare, think again. As we mentioned in our September 2013 blog post, we know at least eight children in our immediate circle of friends who have been diagnosed with a form of childhood cancer. Ava Buhr, the daughter of a long-time Salon Khouri client, was diagnosed with Pre-B Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia when she was just two and a half years old. After two and a half years of chemotherapy — yes two and a half years — we got to cheer as Ava celebrated her last day of chemotherapy! You can read more about Ava here

Left: Ava after being diagnosed. Right: Ava on her LAST day of chemo!!

Left: Ava after being diagnosed. Right: Ava on her LAST day of chemo!!

Then, just last year, we received heartbreaking news that a long-time family friend’s daughter, Kate Rhoades, was diagnosed at just two and a half years of age with high risk, Pre-B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia — just like Ava. You can read more about Kate’s story here. The survival rates for ALL are great — which is the good news. However, Kate, just like Ava, will still have to endure a grueling two and a half years of chemotherapy. That’s a lot of pokes, a lot of nausea, a lot of just not feeling well at all. Probably one of the most difficult introductions I’ve ever had to make in my life was introducing Kate’s mom to Ava’s mom. Happy introductions would be something in the realm of, “both your daughters love Hello Kitty — I thought I’d introduce you!” Instead, it was, “Lindsay, let me introduce you to Jeannie. Her daughter was also diagnosed with ALL at two and a half years old and she can hopefully answer some questions for you.” 

On the left, Kate after being diagnosed checking out the "tubies" that will be implanted in her port so that chemo can be given with less "pokes". On the right, Kate having a particularly bad chemo week. Blankies and iPad time were all she was up for doing that week.

On the left, Kate after being diagnosed checking out the “tubies” that will be implanted in her port so that chemo can be administered. On the right, Kate having a particularly bad chemo week. Blankies and iPad time were all she was up for doing that week.

We will continue to raise awareness for these little cuties. And we will continue to raise awareness for those we lost to this awful disease just this past year: Talia Joy Castellano, Zach Sobiech, Chase Johnson, and two local children, Gabriella Miller and Gavin Rupp. Each time we hear another child has lost their battle, our heart is filled with a heavy sadness. It is then filled with anger — anger that pediatric cancer is given such little funding compared to adult cancers, and anger that childhood cancers have risen 29% in the past 20 years and it’s not a headline story on every news channel.

As a little ol’ hair salon in Fairfax, VA, we are just trying to help in any way we can. Spread awareness, raise a little money, and hopefully, inspire others to learn more about childhood cancer and what they can do to help. One easy thing everyone can do is to sign the petition at The Truth 365 asking Congress to make childhood cancer research a national priority. You could follow Kate and Ava’s stories, volunteer at Cure Fest this September, or just simply pray for these kids. We will continue to pray daily for these little ones. Also, this May, Salon Khouri will donate $1 from each haircut to the dream team of pediatric oncologists working hard to find a cure via The Truth 365.

Justice for the poor …

IJMLogoInternational Justice Mission works to bring justice to the poor, who otherwise have no voice. IJM’s founder, Gary Haugen, was a human rights attorney working for the U.S. Department of Justice when the United Nations asked him to lead its investigation of the horrific genocide that had engulfed the small African nation of Rwanda. Compelled by the urgent needs his team saw and inspired by their faith, Haugen and a small team envisioned a new kind of human rights organization: a group that would leverage the skills of criminal justice professionals to protect the poor from violent oppression. IJM is now a global team of nearly 600 lawyers, social workers, investigators, community activists and other professionals working to protect the poor from violence in nearly 20 communities throughout the developing world, with partner offices in Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands and the UK. Through the support of a global movement of friends and partners, IJM has collaborated with local authorities to rescue thousands of victims of everyday violence and has put hundreds of violent criminals behind bars.

Each day, we see powerful proof that justice for the poor is possible.

One of IJM’s areas of focus is sex trafficking, whose victims have shockingly reached even the quiet suburbs of Northern Virginia. Worldwide, nearly two million children are enslaved in sex trafficking. Suhana was just 13 when she was sold into a brothel in India. “It would have been better if I had died,” Suhana explains in a story about her being enslaved. “I wished for a miracle … for someone to come and take me out of that dark place.” Suhana was rescued by IJM during a sting operation and brought into IJM’s aftercare program. Devastatingly, she was lured once again back into slavery from a boy who told her he loved her. She was again rescued, against all odds, and found in Mumbai, a city of over 18 million people. Her story sounds like the makings of a Hollywood film, but it’s a true story and unfortunately, one that happens every day to millions of children. You can see a video put together by IJM of Suhana’s story here.

It’s always the poor who are the first to be victimized. It’s very easy to pick on the poor because who is going to come to defend them? What resources do they have to fight back or to protect themselves?

Saju Mathew, IJM’s National Director in India states a hard fact: “It’s always the poor who are the first to be victimized. It’s very easy to pick on the poor because who is going to come to defend them? What resources do they have to fight back or to protect themselves?” In addition to helping millions of innocent children, IJM also seeks to help free the over 30 million people who are being held as modern-day slaves, and to help the 1.5 billion of the world’s poor who live without secure rights to their homes and property. Please learn more about this wonderful organization and how they are helping bring justice to the poor.

This April, Salon Khouri will be donating $1 from every haircut to the International Justice Mission (IJM). You also have an opportunity to donate an additional $1, $3, or $5 upon checkout.

Helping AFA reach their goal

The students of Ad Fontes Academy in Centreville, VA have a BIG goal ahead of them, and just about 30 days to get there. They have set out to raise $800,000 in 45 days and have just about 30 days left to reach their goal. The school would like to build a modular facility so that all students, K-12, can be united at one campus. They are currently spread across two campuses, a lower school serving grades K-4, and an upper school serving grades 5-12. Having the students at two separate locations limits the mentoring that is so inherent in the philosophy of the school, which pairs students from upper grades with students from lower grades to nurture relationships and leadership skills amongst the students.


AFA upper school student mentoring a lower school student during Dr. Seuss Week

Ad Fontes Academy is a Classical Christian School located in Centreville, VA. The classical model of education is thousands of years old, begun by the Greeks and Romans and developed through history. It’s focus is on the curriculum of trivium, meaning “three ways”, wherein a child’s learning is broken into phases of grammar, logic, then rhetoric. It is also the educational methodology followed by this great nation’s founding fathers.

Ad Fontes is indeed a small school but it has a huge community impact. Last year, 16 students of Ad Fontes delivered over 500 pounds of clothing and shoes to the Refuge of Hope in Pucallpa, Peru. They also painted, landscaped, built a roof, put of screens and telephone poles, spent time with students, and ministered to children in remote villages along the Ucayali River. This year, 26 students and adults will be taking part in the mission trip to help better the lives of these sweet children.

An AFA upper school student having fun blowing bubbles with a Refuge of Hope student in Pucallpa, Peru.

The culture of Ad Fontes, although academically rigorous, creates and instills an absolute embodiment of selflessness. The school would like to grow to accommodate more local families wanting to pursue a Classical education. Tuition aid is available for families not able to meet tuition.

Salon Khouri will be donating $1 from every haircut in March toward their effort. It may not be much relative to the total, but by supporting them in this huge goal, we hope to inspire others to donate or to make a bond investment toward their growth effort.

Our heart knows these gals will make a difference!

For the last couple of years in February, we’ve been making a push to increase awareness of womens’ heart disease issues, and have been donating to the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women campaign. We wanted to have a more direct impact this year, did some research and have selected the Go Red for Women Multicultural Scholarship Fund for our community giving efforts this February. We read through some of the stories from the 2013 scholarship winners and fell in love with some of these gals! We love their determination for learning and their passion for helping and serving others. They are amazing young women and we know they will have an amazing impact on others in their careers!


Whittney Work has always dreamed of being a neonatal nurse. Whittney grew up in a household with two other sisters and a single mother working hard to keep the family afloat. To help out, Work began shifts as a waitress at sixteen to help support her family. “Although it was challenging and tiring, I managed to graduate with honors, and I am now the first child in my family to attend a university,” states Work. Currently, Work maintains a part-time job, is enrolled in 13 credit hours of classes, and does clinical nursing rotations — all while maintaining a 3.8 GPA. The scholarship helps Work pay for tuition. “Because I come from a low-income family, my mother can’t contribute to my education the way she’d like.”

Jainty John also stole our hearts after we read her story of growing up in a village where “disease and medical problems were more common than medicine and doctors.” John is currently studying to be a physician’s assistant and is enrolled in the graduate physician’s assistant program at Le Moyne College. To help pay her tuition, John works two jobs at a hospital and interns at a dental clinic during the summer. The scholarship helps lessen the burden for John so she can focus more on her studies.

And Myo-Sabai Aye, who is pursuing a rigorous M.D./Master’s in Public Heath at Eastern Virginia Medical School. Aye, an immigrant from Burma, learned English by studying children’s books. She went on to graduate from the University of Virginia and greatly appreciates the scholarship as it allows her to cut back on her hours as an interpreter for the International Refugee Committee, work she loves doing, but doesn’t have time for with the rigorous curriculum of her program.

We hope that our contribution will help other women like Work, John and Aye, so they can realize their dreams of serving others.

For the month of February, Salon Khouri will donate $1 from every haircut to the Go Red for Women Multicultural Scholarship Fund. You will also have the opportunity at checkout to donate an additional $1, $3, or $5.

Dusty Needs a Home …

Take me home ...

Take me home …

This little guy’s name is Dusty. He really wants you to take him home. Dusty is a rescue at Homeless Animal Rescue Team. You’ve probably seen HART at the local PetsMart and Petco on weekends with their rescued furry friends.

HART is a wonderful organization that takes great care to ensure their pets are placed in the right homes. We adopted our dog, who looks eerily similar to Dusty, in 2000. We were so impressed by the care they took in placing Bogart with us.

This January, we donating $1 from every haircut to HART, as well as 10% from all of Jennifer’s Silpada sales when purchased from this link.

Helping the Homeless in Fairfax

Last month, we partnered with Our Daily Bread Fairfax to help Fairfax families in-need — those who are at risk of becoming homeless. This month, are partnering with The Lamb Center in Fairfax, VA, who provides services to Fairfax’s homeless.

The Lamb Center focuses on ending homelessness and providing hope. But to make a difference in homelessness, food, clothing and hot showers are just the first steps. Almost every person The Lamb Center encounters needs job counseling, transportation and housing. The Lamb Center works with other organizations, ministries and government agencies to help people get back on their feet.

We think sometimes that poverty is only being hungry, naked and homeless. The poverty of being unwanted, unloved and uncared for is the greatest poverty.

– Mother Teresa

The Lamb Center has served over forty-four thousand meals, hosted more than 364 AA meetings, and has provided over 600 job counseling sessions in 2012 alone. They are working diligently to help transform the lives of the homeless in Fairfax.


Click to view larger image

This December, we are donating $1 from every haircut to The Lamb Center. Also, upon checkout, you will have an opportunity to add $1, $3, or $5 to donate to The Lamb Center. Please take a moment to learn about other volunteering needs the The Lamb Center has.

What we love about Our Daily Bread Fairfax

We lovODBLogoe Our Daily Bread Fairfax as they have a full spectrum of services to help our neighbors-in-need. What makes Our Daily Bread unique is that they were developed to serve the families who, while not homeless, are in financial crisis and are in danger of “falling through the cracks” toward homelessness. The families helped by Our Daily Bread range from the working poor — often juggling multiple jobs — to the elderly and disabled. And, more than half of those served by Our Daily Bread are children. Our Daily Bread helped local resident, Monica, after the company she worked for went out of business. Monica had a good job and savings, but struggled to support her children after she lost her job. Monica shared a little about her experience with Our Daily Bread:

Our Daily Bread pretty much saved my life…If it wasn’t for the help that I have gotten from them, I don’t know what would have happened. I think I would be in a shelter with my kids right now.

The mission of Our Daily Bread is simple: guiding our neighbors toward self-sufficiency. In addition to providing food assistance, Our Daily Bread offers Financial Literacy programs to help those in need with financial guidance and training.

We are cheerfully supporting Our Daily Bread by donating $1 from every haircut in November. Also, you will have an opportunity at check out to add an additional $1, $3, or $5 to your ticket to be donated to Our Daily Bread. These donations will be supporting Fairfax families-in-need with meals and gifts this Christmas season.

A survivor’s journey.

Our breast cancer survivor role model for October, Allison Kelly.

Our most beautiful role model for the month of October, Allison Kelly.

Six years ago, Allison Kelly was turning 40. With no family history of breast cancer, she had very little anxiety about scheduling her first mammogram. She did all the right things like monthly self-breast exams and yearly check ups at the doctor. And, to add to her sense of ease, Allison nor the doctors ever felt the slightest lump during her exams. Then everything in her life changed in an instant. “My mammogram lit up like a Christmas tree,” Allison recalls. “There were two tumors growing and my results were triple positive.” Allison, married with two young children who were just three and seven at the time, had a lot of big decisions to make.

Allison and her doctor’s decided on a treatment consisting of a lumpectomy, radiation, and chemotherapy. The treatments lasted a year and a half. “I can go on for hours about that hell,” Allison lamented. Then, while sharing her story, Allison paused for a moment and said, “You know what’s funny? When I started the chemo, I thought the hardest part would be losing my hair. It was my signature — my thick, long, curly hair. Turns out that was the easiest part. Chemo was a bitch.”

To get her through it all, Allison relied heavily on her strong network of friends. “Thank God for friends and family. They were my support.” They walked side-by-side with her in her first Avon walk, while she was undergoing chemo. Friends brought meals, helped keep her spirits up — one even broke into her house and cleaned it while she was sick during her treatments. It was encouragement from friends and family, especially her husband, that helped her get through each day. She described him as a stoic man who picked up all the pieces when she was sick, but who never let her lose her sense of humor. “He could always make me laugh,” Allison smiled, “even on the worst days.” Allison also drew support from her Oncologist. She recalls telling her Oncologist, “Just help me see my kids through high school.” Her Oncologist looked her straight in the eyes and firmly stated, “You’re going to live to be a grandmother.”

It took Allison a year after her last treatment to finally feel normal again. Allison went about her life, working, raising money for breast cancer research, and spending time with her husband and children. And, not one to be beaten, Allison continued walking in Avon walks. To date, Allison has participated in 8 walks, and will be walking her 9th in 2014. One year Allison was going to walk two walks, one in DC, then one in October in New York with her family. But when October came, Allison was too sick to travel or walk. Her family in New York walked in her honor.

A few years passed and Allison approached her five year remission anniversary. “For my five year anniversary on 12-12-12, my husband planned TWO parties. I’ll never forget it.” Her doctor’s assured her she had beat cancer — she was given the all clear. Glad to put cancer behind her, Allison scheduled a follow up mammogram two weeks after the party. She recalls how, in the early stages of her cancer, days seemed like years when waiting for results. “There was one point I went for five weeks without knowing if I would live or not.” However, when speaking of her first post-remission mammogram, she recalls her complete lack of worry, “I walked in there not worried one bit.”

Then, she got the results. It wasn’t good. The cancer had returned. Luckily it was caught early, but her doctors told her chemo wouldn’t work this time. In February 2013, Allison underwent a nine hour double mastectomy and reconstructive surgery then went on to spend three days in the cardiac ICU. Allison spent weeks sleeping in a recliner at home as it was too painful to lie down in a bed, but, in typical Allison fashion, she kept her positive attitude and sense of humor, posting hysterical quips about pain meds to her Facebook page. Allison has a third and hopefully final surgery scheduled this month. Allison described the surgery as “intense” and “painful,” but, she would do it again in an instant to know that she probably won’t have to face breast cancer again.

Allison is our role model for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. She is a force to be reckoned with, but warm and sweet at the same time. Her personality is infectious. Her eyes are full of light and kindness, yet at the same time, you immediately sense you would not want to throw down with Allison. Cancer didn’t stand a chance with this gal.

Asking Allison to share some final words of wisdom, Allison spoke of finding local support even beyond friends and family. She received from INOVA tremendous help from a local organization called, Life with Cancer. “They helped me with how to talk to my children about what was happening to mommy, and three things were key. One, it’s not your fault, two, it’s not contagious, and three, I’m going to look funny.” She also said her friends used the free scheduling service, Take Them a Meal to help schedule meals for the family. But, her biggest piece of advice was to get a mammogram. “I shouldn’t have had cancer. I didn’t fit the profile. That 10 minutes of discomfort saved my life.”

During the month of October, we will be again participating in Pink Hair for Hope, which has helped raise over $2.5 million dollars to date for cancer research and advocacy programs. Through this program, pink extensions can be added to your hair for $10, with the proceeds going to breast cancer research programs. We will also be donating $1 from every haircut in October to the local organization, the Tigerlily Foundation. And, kicking it off, we are hosting a Pink Hair for Hope night on Thursday, October 10th from 6-8 PM.

Your action item for this month …

Jonathan and I have been asked on several occasions this question: “What got you into pediatric cancer fundraising? Do you know someone who has cancer?”

Honestly, we were pretty oblivious to pediatric cancer prior to 2007. And I mean oblivious as in ‘head stuck in the sand because you just don’t want to know about such awful things’ oblivious. But in 2007, a friend told us about Taylor Love. I still have the email and vividly remember watching the video for the Loneliest Road Campaign. At the time, our first born was not even a year old. It hit us so.very.hard. What if this was our child? The sorrow and desperation we felt was immediate – and we both said, “what can we do to help?” We started by holding our first ever cut-a-thon to “cut out” neuroblastoma, the rare pediatric cancer with which Taylor was diagnosed at just 18 months of age, and have held six annual cut-a-thons.

Fast forward to 2010. I wanted to re-connect with a mother I’d met on a cloth diapering network. I had been meaning to reach out to her as I wanted to get our kids together for a play date and I felt awful that I hadn’t even met her newest, then 6 month old Casey. The email I received back made my heart stop and my eyes immediately fill with tears. Her son, at just 6 months old, was diagnosed with atypical teratoid rhabdoid tumor (AT/RT), a rare form of brain cancer. He was undergoing extremely toxic treatments of chemo as there was no drug or therapy formulated specifically for babies. So toxic that she would have to wear gloves to change his diapers as his urine was toxic. Casey fought his battle with pediatric cancer until he was 14 1/2 months old. I can’t write anymore about Casey because I will start crying (again). Please read his CaringBridge site to learn more about the wonderfully cute little baby boy, Casey Kropf.

So yes, this is the really, really bad stuff — the stuff no one wants to talk about because it’s kids and it’s so awful. This is the stuff I tried hiding from for so many years. But the truth is, it’s real, and it is awful, and if we DON’T talk about it, nothing is going to get done. 

About that same time in the summer of 2010, we learned that Taylor Love, who was showing No Evidence of Disease from the neuroblastoma, was diagnosed with chemo-induced leukemia. Yes, you read that right — the very chemo she was given to cure her of neuroblastoma gave her a secondary cancer. Taylor has fought both cancers and is in school living a mostly normal life. But she and her parents live in fear every day of several scary thoughts: will the cancer return and what long-term effects did treating her cancer have on her body?

Unfortunately, our list of “do you know someone who was diagnosed with pediatric cancer” didn’t end with Taylor or Casey. In late 2011, we learned that a client’s 2 1/2 year old daughter, Ava, was diagnosed with Pre-B Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, or ALL. Little Ava has been undergoing chemo since 2011, and has six more months to go. And, just about three weeks ago, a long-time friend shared that her 2 year old, Kate, was also diagnosed with ALL. Pictures of Kate from just three weeks ago show a healthy, happy 2 year old. This is a startling contrast to the photo that her mom Lindsay posted today of a newly bald Kate, recovering from a fever and bone marrow biopsy in a hospital bed. This one hit me especially hard as Lindsay and I were pregnant at the same time — I with my third and her with her first. Again, this could be my daughter.

There are more kids — an acquaintance on a yahoo group lost her 11 year old Stephan to a brain tumor. Our friend’s nephew lost his battle with leukemia at age five. A friend’s neighbor also lost their 5 year old son to leukemia. Isabella Santos, whom we heard of through a client and friend, lost her battle with neuroblastoma last year — she was just 7 years old and had been fighting for five years. Now we are up to eight children, and that’s just children in my circle of friends and doesn’t include the many others I read about daily.

After having our eyes open to this epidemic the last several years, there are a few things that have really stood out. The first is that most of the folks out there doing the fundraising and trying to spread awareness are the parents and families of those directly affected. This just isn’t right. They have enough on their plate – it’s our duty to relieve them of that burden. Second, childhood cancer, to us, isn’t rare. We’ve heard the words “proportional funding” and “rare” often in this world of childhood cancer — this needs to change. These kids need more funding; childhood cancer isn’t rare (at least not anymore).

Here are some of the hard truths about childhood cancer from The Truth 365:

  • Of the $5 billion of federal funding allotted for cancers, pediatric cancers receive only 4% of those research dollars.
  • Pediatric oncologists spend 60% of their time fundraising as there is not enough money to keep research flowing for these kids.
  • Childhood cancer is the leading cause of death of children under the age of 5.
  • One in 330 children will be diagnosed with cancer by the time they are 20.
  • Each year, there are 13,500 children diagnosed with cancer.
  • Incidence of invasive pediatric cancers is up 29% in the past 20 years.

  • In 20 years the FDA has initially approved only one drug for any childhood cancer.
  • The average age of death for a child with cancer is 8, causing a childhood cancer victim to lose 69 years of expected life years; a significant loss of productivity to society.

  • Childhood cancer survivors are at significant risk for secondary cancers later in life.
  • Cancer treatments can affect a child’s growth, fertility, and endocrine system. Child survivors may be permanently immunologically suppressed.


After reading this post — and let me warn you, the post is, with every right, edgy — we decided we weren’t going to call our September community outreach “Childhood Cancer Awareness Month,” but instead, “Childhood Cancer Action Month.” What one or two things can you do this month to help these kids? We’ve got some ideas for you, and many of them don’t cost a dime, but will have a profound impact as you spread information about pediatric cancer.

First, here’s what we are doing:

  1. We will be donating $1 from every haircut in September to The Arms Wide Open Childhood Cancer Foundation.
  2. This year, instead of a cut-a-thon which only lasts one day, we wanted to do
    Gold Hair for a Cure

    Gold Hair for a Cure

    something that people could participate in for the entire month. Similar to the Pink Hair for Hope campaign, we are launching a Gold Hair for a Cure campaign. Come and have a SO.CAP gold extension added to your locks for just $10 and we will donate 100% of our profit to finding a cure for pediatric cancer. When people ask why you have a gold hair extension, tell them about Pediatric Cancer Action Month! (And, we have contacted SO.CAP USA to see if they can make this a national campaign. We’ll keep you posted!)

  3. We will be asking every person checking out if they would like to add $1, $3 or $5 to their ticket to be donated to pediatric cancer research funding.
  4. I am hosting a Silpada fundraiser this month. I am donating 100% of my profits from this fundraiser and am raffling off free jewelry for those who order. Need gifts, want something for yourself and want to help? Easy! Shop the fundraiser here.

Here’s what you can do:

  1. Take a Crazy Hair Day for Kids’ Cancer flyer to your school and have your school host a no-cost fundraiser. It’s so very simple. Kids get to wear their hair crazy for a day and they bring in a small donation. We have a flyer for preschool and elementary schools, and one for middle and high schools. When other kids ask why their hair is ‘crazy’ for the day, it’s a *great* opportunity for these kids to share why. Don’t have kids in school? Take a flyer to work and hang it in your office kitchen. And if you are not a client of ours, take the fliers to your salon. Share with your stylist or the owner of that salon. Get them involved in promoting this amazingly easy fundraiser.
  2. Donate to any one of the many organizations helping kids battling cancer. Here are just a few great ones we know about or have donated to in the past: The Band of Parents, The Isabella Santos Foundation, Journey 4 A Cure, Arms Wide Open Childhood Cancer Foundation, and the DC Candlelighters. Please do not think any amount is too small. If everyone gave $1, these organizations and the children they serve would benefit tremendously!
  3. Participate in a walk or run, or triathalon.
  4. Get involved through a social media outreach campaign through The Truth 365.
  5. Watch the Truth 365 Documentary to learn more about the state of pediatric cancer.
  6. Write your Congressperson, and ask him or her to sign The Pledge. We need more than 4% of federal cancer research dollars going toward pediatric cancers.

Hopefully one of these will speak to you. These kids do not have a voice. They are busy fighting for their lives. Be their voice, take action for them.

Our August Community Outreach: Autism Speaks

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and autism are both general terms for a group of complex disorders of brain development. These disorders are characterized, in varying degrees, by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication and repetitive behaviors. They include autistic disorder, Rett syndrome, childhood disintegrative disorder, pervasive developmental disorder-not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS) and Asperger syndrome. An estimated 1 out of 54 boys and 1 in 252 girls are diagnosed with autism in the United States each year.

Jonathan and I have several friends whose children have been diagnosed. Having witnessed their diagnosis as an outsider, we’ve seen the grieving stages the parents go through as they grapple through denial, anger, bargaining, depression, then ultimately acceptance with the disorder. We are oftentimes at a loss with what to say or how to help. It’s frustrating for everyone not knowing the true cause of the disorder. It makes parents question every little thing of the child’s past, all the way to conception, which leaves parents’ minds on an eternal treadmill of questioning thoughts — which for anyone can be exhausting. What we do know about children with autism spectrum disorder is that they are each amazingly gifted and unique. We know they are loved very deeply by their friends and family, even though it may seem at times that these same family and friends are exasperated. The truth is autism is exasperating. It’s also, at times, wonderfully incredible. As our friend said of her sweet, adorable son, “He teaches us something new about ourselves and about the truly important elements of life.”

We’d love for you to take a moment to browse through the Autism Speaks website. For the month of August, Salon Khouri is donating $1 from every haircut to Autism Speaks.