I got this email from a long time reader, Lorie, and wanted to share it with you!

Dear Char,
I wanted to share the special Barbie Doll my daughter received in the mail this past weekend. My daughter has Alopecia, and while it has only affected the back portion of her head, she can at any time loose it all. We belong to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation and on their Facebook site they listed that Mattel donated these special dolls and girls ages 6-13 could get one if their parent filled out the on-line form.
I filled out the form for my daughter, age 11, and we quickly received Ella. Ella is Barbies friend who has lost her hair. It can be either because of Alopecia or Cancer. Ella comes with two wigs, a hair bow, scarf, purse, and sun glasses.
My daughter has been having a lot of fun changing out her dolls hair and adding accessories. Right now my daughter loves to wear hats and head bands to accessories and feel more confident with her hair loss.
We both think its great that Mattel made this doll for girls. I do know there is some controversy among the Alopecia community because Ella does come with a wig on her head. But not all Alopecia Areata persons have lost all of their hair. And many do wear wigs instead or hats and other accessories.
Ella can only be obtained through an organization that is recognized with girls who loose their hair. She can not be bought on-line or in store. And we had to agree that we would not resell her or we would face a lawsuit.
I do know many Alopecia sufferers believe that she should be sold in store right along side Barbie, but I think having her be available through an organization makes her that much more special.
Hope you all enjoyed seeing Ella. I know she will be well loved by my daughter.
Thank you so much Lorie for sharing this with us! Ella is beautiful – just like your daughter!!