When the American Cancer Society contacted hairstylist Pat Hubbard about volunteering, she used her style skills to help women fighting cancer.
The Hanover cosmetologist helps with the Look Good, Feel Better program, which teaches skin care and beauty techniques to women in York and around the country who are undergoing cancer treatments.
This is Hubbard's 11th year volunteering with the program, which is 25 years old. She helps patients at WellSpan Adams Cancer Center in Gettysburg.
"Every person that I met in the last 10 years has been so unique," Hubbard said.
In particular, one woman's story has stayed with her: The mother wanted to develop a cosmetic routine to disguise the effects of her cancer treatment so her kids wouldn't be afraid, Hubbard said.
"There's a lot of joy for me in this," she said.
The program: Although the premise seems simple, every women is different, and her skin and hair react differently to treatment, Hubbard said. Patients learn 12 steps that help familiarize themselves with their skin again, and those who have lost their hair can restore it by using a "wig bank," which allows them to borrow wigs, she said.
Patients will also walk away with a free cosmetic kit with makeup in their personal skin tone, Hubbard said.
"They have everything they need from the neck up," she said.
Sometimes, women will hesitate when thinking about attending events like this - they're tired and have so much going on - but those who go embrace the extra support, Hubbard said.
"It's really hard for them," she said. "They've just encountered the worst thing of their life, and what they're doing is being very brave."
Next event: WellSpan Health will host monthly Look Good, Feel Better events through the end of the year at the Apple Hill Medical Center.
All women in active cancer treatment are eligible for the free programs, which are held on Mondays from 6 to 8 p.m.
The next session will be on Monday, May 19, at the center, 25 Monument Road in York Township.
Registration is required. Those interested can register by calling 1-800-227-2345.
- Reach Mollie Durkin at firstname.lastname@example.org.