How We Began... Friends Are By Your Side is the home of Wigs and Wishes. In 1998, Martino Cartier began the journey of changing lives through his career as a salon owner, stylist, educator, and TV personality. On May 10, 2011, www.FriendsAreByYourSide.com was born.
Martino´s vision was to join forces with salons across the world and take the pledge to restore dignity to women who lost their hair to chemotherapy AT NO CHARGE. His goal was to find a safe haven for women to go to regardless of their financial situation. Presently, we have hundreds of salons that have made that dream a reality.
Martino´s desire took on a new light when he met Kiki. Kiki was a beautiful girl who had been battling cancer since she was only eight years old. She had been turned down for a wig by a number of foundations.
In April of 2012, Kiki and Martino were introduced when Kiki´s mother reached out to New Jersey State Freeholder, Vincent Nestore, and the rest is history. Martino made a wig for her and the friendship began. Seven months later on November 4, 2012, Martino and www.FriendsAreByYourSide.com brought Kiki to meet Justin Bieber. Not only did she arrive in a hot pink stretch limo, but she was also given the chance to hang out with Justin before the show and take some pictures. Following her meet-and-greet, Kiki was given front row tickets and sat on Martino´s shoulders during the entire concert.
The entire day was priceless. One week later Kiki lost her battle to childhood cancer leaving Martino with a broken heart, but a validation that the mission of www.FriendsAreByYourSide.com was truly his life´s purpose. Since then, hundreds of wigs have been given and dozens of wishes have been granted thanks to generous people just like you.