Cancer survivor turned woodturner creating a way to give back

100 wig stands have been donated to local cancer clinics including Aspirus and Marshfield Clinic
Published: Sep. 20, 2023 at 6:38 PM CDT
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) - A Stevens Point man is leading the charge by creating and donating wig stands to area hospitals. Woodturning is not your typical project to support cancer patients, but for Jim Andersen it hits close to home.

The idea to use his woodturning skills for wig stands was born from a talk with his doctor, this was when he was treated for cancer in the spring.

“I like it, it gives you purpose to what you’re doing, and actually at the same time you can be creative and you can do what you like to do turn wood,” said Andersen.

He’s distributed 100 wig stands to multiple cancer clinics in central Wisconsin including Aspirus and Marshfield Clinic.

“To be able to provide it to someone and fulfill a need and it also provides a spark for them and a little brighter day for them in some of the dismal times they are going through,” Andersen said.

Andersen creates the wig stands in his home shop. his work is really making a difference for cancer patients.

“I’m hearing from the coordinators that they are delighted, one woman said she was going to keep it after she is done and call it a trophy so she would have something to remind her of what she went through and how she successfully managed to get through it,” Andersen added.

The process of woodturning takes at a minimum about one to two hours to put together a wig stand, but Andersen is not the only one making the wig stands. Around 30-40 people from woodturning clubs he’s a part of are also helping.

“They find satisfaction in it too because a lot of them like to turn, but they don’t have anything to do with the wood after they’re done with it,” Andersen said. “So this gives them something that they can make and actually pass on something they can use.”