Young Volunteer Sells Handmade Headbands To Fight Cancer

Jefferson Award Winner Crafts 'Maisy Puffs'

STANFORD (KPIX 5) She’s only eight years old, but this week’s Jefferson Award winner is a head above her peers when it comes to giving.

At Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, volunteer Maisy Garnett calls out the Bingo numbers for young patients. It’s a highlight for patient Breana Shanse.

“I’ve been stuck here for a week,” lamented Shanse. “(But now) I feel like I’m at home and having fun.”

Garnett, 8, is known for the fluffy headbands she crafts and calls “Maisy Puffs.”

“They’re very nicely made, they’re soft,” Shanse said, showing off one on her own head.

At Bingo, Garnett gives away the headbands as prizes. But most of the time, she sells them for between $20 and $35 each, and donates the proceeds to pediatric cancer research.

“I think it’s important because cancer, some people die from it, so I want to help them save their lives,” she explained.

“Maisy is an inspiration,” said Ashton Slagel, Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital community relations officer. “Maisy has raised more than $4000 in just a short year and a half to benefit pediatric cancer research here at the hospital. And we are so grateful for her support.”

Garnett came up with the idea for her headband fundraiser after making a paper hat for her baby sister. She realized it covered her head.

“So for people who didn’t have hair, it would be good for them,” she added. “So that’s when I thought about cancer.”

She makes the Maisy puffs on evenings and weekends. Her parents accompany her as she sells them at school festivals, football games, and craft fairs. She also sells them on her website. Buyers can customize the colors. Prices depend on the number of puffs and the bling on the band.

“She’s so creative and just watching her make her puffs, her product, and sell it for a good cause is very endearing,” said her father, Eben Garnett.

And Maisy hopes cancer survivors wear her headbands with style and smiles.

“When you are happy, your body wants to feel better quicker,” she said.

So for selling hundreds of headbands to raise thousands of dollars for cancer research, this week’s Jefferson Award in the Bay Area goes to Maisy Garnett.

More from Sharon Chin
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