On Monday, Dec. 11, Jane’s Closet, a service of the Box Butte Health Foundation (BBHF), donated 67 wigs of various colors and styles to Emma’s Closet in Scottsbluff.
“It’s a huge blessing,” Jennifer Hiltgen, Regional West Cancer Services social worker, said. “Having the donations, we then don’t have to purchase the wigs. It’s fun to be able to offer more and pay it forward to these patients that are going through rough times. It’s very good to have.”
Because Box Butte General Hospital (BBGH) cannot fit women with wigs, BBHF Director Chelsea Thompson and the Jane’s Closet Committee decided that some of the wigs donated over the years would benefit local cancer patients more in places like Emma’s Closet.
“We really wanted to keep it local,” Thompson said. “A lot of people from Alliance do come to Scottsbluff for treatment. I think it’s just really cool that we could keep it local and we can pay it forward.”
Emma’s Closet is a salon located in the Cancer Treatment Center of Regional West Medical Center. It provides women experiencing hair loss due to cancer treatment a place to pick out a new or gently used wig, scarf, hat, or turban at no cost. There are also no income limitations or referrals necessary to receive an item from Emma’s Closet.
“I think it’s just nice for the patients too because they are clearly going through so much already that it’s one less thing they have to worry about financially, and even just trying to figure out how to find a wig,” Thompson said. “And it’s nice that they can do it in person; they can see what they look like.”
The wigs donated to Emma’s Closet will be washed, dried, and styled by volunteer cosmetologists before joining the ranks of wigs already on display in the salon.
Established in memory of Jane Wineteer, a BBGH employee who passed away after fighting breast cancer in 2007, Jane’s Closet provides financial support and comfort bags to patients battling a variety of cancer types in Box Butte County.
To learn more about Emma’s Closet, please visit https://www.rwhs.org/services/cancer/cancer-services/resources-education/emmas-closet.
To learn more or donate to Jane’s Closet, please visit https://www.bbgh.org/services/other-services/janes-closet.html.