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Community Service: Get Involved

By: Erin Zaleski
Posted: June 11, 2008, from the October 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

These days, a successful spa business no longer is just about helping clients to feel better. It’s also about doing good. Building relationships is a tenet of any flourishing spa—both with clients and with the surrounding community. By getting involved, spa team members can take pride in making a difference, while creating camaraderie with other staff and increasing the facility’s visibility.

“We are in the business of health and wellness. The spa industry has an obligation to give back,” says Hannelore R. Leavy, executive director of The Day Spa Association (DSA). “Doing so creates a buzz in the community, which drives business back through your door.” Participating in community service projects has become so fundamental that each time a potential DSA member applies for accreditation, the organization “looks very closely at community service involvement,” according to Leavy. Here is how a few spas throughout the country are getting involved, and how you can become more active in giving back.

Becoming inspired

Janie Patton’s inspiration to do more came from her 97-year-old mother. The owner of The Fountain Skin Care Centre in Kingwood, Texas, and a longtime member of the National Charity League, Patton has donated services and products to annual auctions that benefit nonprofits, such as the National Woman’s Club, for many years. But it was a visit with her mother, who resides in an assisted living facility, that presented yet another way to make a difference.

During her visits, Patton would pamper her mom with minispa services. “One day she told me that the other residents always talked about how lucky she was to have a daughter care for her in this way,” Patton says. “I realized that a lot of those ladies didn’t have family who visited and that they were in need of some attention.”

Since then, Patton and her team began making monthly trips to local nursing homes and assisted living facilities where they offer residents services such as manicures, brow waxing and arm massages. “They love us and appreciate what we do so much,” she notes. “We do it because our hearts are in the right place, and I truly believe that you reap what you sow.”

Choosing a cause