It was a case of hair today and help tomorrow for 14 woman and children in New Taipei City, who lopped off their ponytails so they could be turned into wigs for people undergoing chemotherapy treatment for cancers.

The group, who included a councillor and recent immigrants from Vietnam, gave their hair to a charity that operates a food bank. The councillor, Hung Chia-chun, was making her second donation, and recalled she initially had mixed feelings about getting involved.

“I missed my long hair, which had taken years to grow,” she admitted. However, Hung was impressed by the initiative and said she now looks forward to doing her part to help the cancer patients.

One of the Vietnamese, with the surname Nguyen, brought her youngest daughter along to teach her that it is a bigger blessing to give than to receive. Nguyen has lived in Taiwan for 16 years, after marrying a local man. He died from a cardiac arrest six years ago.

A mother of three, Nguyen has herself been helped by charities, and said she tries to give back to society whenever she can.