City of Hope Stories:
Part 2

The City of Hope Positive Image Center is dedicated to helping cancer patients preserve their sense of self throughout their treatment by providing oncology-trained, licensed cosmetologists who can help minimize the visual side effects of cancer. They also offer custom wig fittings, product consultations and complimentary haircuts and head shaves.

In Part 1 of our City of Hope series, we spoke with a former patient who visited the Positive Image Center throughout her treatment. Today, we’re sharing a different perspective: that of Stylist Cassie Polchow, who works in the Positive Image Center and has a lifelong connection to City of Hope.

As a reminder, $5 from each Moroccanoil Protect & Prevent Spray purchase made through July 27th will benefit the Positive Image Center. You can also donate directly to City of Hope here or learn more about volunteer opportunities here.

How did you hear about the City of Hope Positive Image Center?

I was raised at City of Hope. My mom was an employee for 30 years. 

Why did you decide to become involved?

A friend of my Mom’s was the manager of the Positive Image Center and knew I was a hairstylist.  She asked if I would be interested in a job. At the time I was still building my clientele but wanted to use my license in a different way. I wanted to give back to people in need. I wanted to help people feel good about themselves and how they looked while going through their cancer journey. 

What services do you perform most frequently? Do you notice a difference in patients after their service?

We do a lot of head shaves and wig fittings. I love fitting wigs on a patient and watching her face light up. Many have more confidence when they’re wearing a wig and say they feel like themselves again.  After a consultation with a patient, I notice they are more relaxed and less anxious. 

What has been the most meaningful part of your time at the Positive Image Center?

The most meaningful part of my time at City of Hope has been being able to give patients a sense of normalcy. Women struggle with the many physical side effects of chemo and radiation therapy. Being able to help them get their confidence back is the greatest feeling. 

How can hairstylists who aren’t located near the Positive Image Center or a similar program help cancer patients and their families?

Hairstylists should educate themselves about the side effects of chemo and radiation therapy. Know the resources in the community.