PhD student Manon Kleijn had her long, golden locks cut off for charity: a wig for a child with cancer. EM was present live at the decisive moment.

Manon Kleijn (25) has a striking appearance. She has bright red lips and very long, blond hair. But not for much longer.

“Oh, Manon!”, her mother calls out just before hairdresser Jean Paul puts the clippers into her long braids on Thursday 4 June. Ten seconds later, the braids are next to the barber mirror. “This feels so weird!”, Kleijn exclaims.

First time with short hair

Visiting the hairdresser is a big step for Kleijn. Normally, she only goes a couple of times a year to cut the dead ends of her hair. “I have never had short hair before. In only know myself with long hair,” she says. But today she leaves the hairdresser’s sporting a short haircut.

The Haarwensen Foundation

This is not just a fad. The PhD student of Erasmus MC has her hair cut for charity. “Through a friend, I heard the story of a girl with cancer. She felt pretty depressed without her hair, less of a girl. When she got a wig from the Haarwensen Foundation, she got back to being her old self. That story made me want to donate my hair.”

Bob haircut

Kleijn admits she’s a little nervous. While the scissors are flying through her hair, her phone beeps. Within a few minutes, her last photo as long-haired PhD student got 46 likes. However, once the hairdresser is done, she smiles from ear to ear. “Wow. That’s so cool,” she says while admiring her bob cut. “The whole time the hairdresser was busy cutting my hair, I was thinking about the fact that some child would be very happy with my hair. That is one of the nice things about sharing: it allows me to personally make a difference in the fight against childhood cancer.”

Photo: Manon before and after the metamorphosis.


The braids are given to her in an envelope so she can send them to the Haarwensen Foundation. However, Kleijn’s support for the fight against childhood cancer does not end with the hair donation. On 14 June, Kleijn will also participate in the Ladies Run for the KiKa Foundation. She’s already looking forward to it. “Doing something for a good cause gives me an enormous energy boost.” MZ (photos: Jan de Bloois)