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During the holidays, I had some extra time on my hands and I wanted to make the most of it.  I picked up the phone book, went straight to the yellow pages, and found a group in my area that might need volunteers. I thought this would be a good opportunity to set an example for my children on how to give back to the community.  

This led me to Baptist Children’s Services and the desk of Nancy Guthridge, Coordinator of Program Resources.  When I told her of my desire of wanting to get involved in something meaningful, she asked me what my profession was. After informing her that I am a hairstylist and am very passionate about what I do, she was immediately thrilled; she relayed to me that the girls in the community’s group foster homes are always in need of a haircut, given that there are no funds to provide this service. The wheels in my head started turning.  As I thought about the holidays drawing near, I realized I wanted to do something big! 

I set out on the mission of finding local businesses, friends and family to donate items to assist with giving the girls the most extraordinary makeover. The salon I worked for agreed to donate the supplies and the stylists donated their time. They were able to choose a cut, color or highlight as well as light make-up application. The occasion went off without a hitch and the 6 girls, ranging in ages 13-17 were able to escape their reality for a day and enjoy being pampered.  They looked amazing and their faces beamed with pride.  Finishing the day, the girls were presented with all the gifts that had been so lovingly donated to them and they were speechless!  Provided to them were some luxuries that they rarely had the pleasure of experiencing, everything from Gertrude Hawk Chocolates to full size bottles of perfume donated by Macy’s.   Also donated was lunch food, gift baskets, makeup, hair products, and a very special custom made hand blown glass necklace in each of the girls’ favorite colors with their names engraved on each one by local artist Kim Frazcek! What an experience it was to see all these companies and individuals give so freely of themselves. As a cherry on top, every single contributor told me they would be more than willing to continue to help with future events. It left an impression on me but more importantly, the girls. They could not believe that all this was for them…just for them. Best of all, it gave them a sense of individualism, something that can be hard to discover when you are living in a group home. 

While this started as a gesture for just the holidays, I realized not only how good it felt to give to others, but also how great the need was for these young women to have more positive experiences in their lives. I knew that I could not abandon this project; these girls deserved to be given the opportunity to feel confident and beautiful on their special occasions like prom and graduation, but more importantly every day.  I want to continue to grant these very deserving and important Wandering Wishes.


Taren Turocy

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