Eaglehawk girl Maleah Lawry lets down her hair for children in need

For years, Victorian girl Maleah Lawry has idolised Rapunzel.

The eight-year-old wore her brown hair long to better resemble her favourite Disney princess.

But, much like her favourite character, Maleah had a dramatic chop. 

“It feels like I’m actually Rapunzel,” she said on Saturday, at the hairdressing salon.

Mahleah donated her hair to children’s charity Variety, who will see that it is used to make a wig.

Her delight at the idea of another child having hair to style was evident from the moment she snipped off her ponytail.

“I really want to help little kids that don’t have hair,” Mahleah said. 

Her mother, Samantha Lawry, said it was the first time her daughter had requested anything more than a trim.

“She wanted hair like Rapunzel,” she said. 

The change in preferences was inspired by Maleah’s aunt, Gemma Long, who donated her tresses to create a wig for people experiencing hair loss. 

“When it was explained why she [Gemma] was doing it Maleah decided she wanted to do the same thing,” Samantha said. 

“It’s such a big thing for anybody to do, let alone an eight-year-old.”

Maleah showed no signs of nervousness as she picked up the scissors to make the first cut. 

“I can’t believe how happy she was about it,” Samantha said. 

“She was wanting it done for so long.”

Her daughter was seven years old when she decided to donate her hair. 

“She has such a big heart,” Samantha said. 

Under the guidance of hairdresser Mollie Cahill, of honeyeater hair and beauty salon, Maleah cut two of the three ponytails of hair she donated. 

But giving her hair wasn’t enough.

Maleah has also been running a fundraising campaign in support of the Starlight Children's Foundation.

She is more than half-way to reaching her $2000 goal. 

Samantha said her eight-year-old daughter researched the charity herself. 

“We spoke about charities that helped sick children,” she said. 

“She loved what the Starlight foundation did.”

Maleah had some insight into what the foundation did, having encountered their workers during a visit to the Royal Children’s Hospital for a checkup for her baby brother.

The Eaglehawk girl said she was impressed by what she saw. 

The Starlight workers made sure the children were having a good time, “instead of sitting there and doing nothing”.

She invited anybody wishing to support her campaign to donate online here.