Local 706 - The Artisan

Spring 2016

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Page 13 of 39

14 NEWS NEWS GUILD GUILD NEWS In January 2016, I was invited to go to a fundraiser to raise awareness about human trafficking. The event was in Santa Ana, Calif. The drive was a bit far but the desire to go overtook the location. Once I arrived, I was in the company of mostly Hispanic people speaking their native language. Being the gringo that I am (ha ha), not under- standing a word they were saying, I could feel the sadness some of these people carried with them. Then I met some of the survivors. I was taken back by the layers of make- up these woman wore to cover their pain inside. In their eyes I read sadness, fear, anger, uncertainty. I made it a point to meet the mastermind behind the center. Who was this woman these ladies came for refuge and counsel just to make it through another day, I thought to myself— Virginia, a bright, sparkly-eye woman whose heart was big and filled with hope and love. I had no idea human trafficking was such a big racket. And when I heard some of the ladies' stories, tears filled my eyes. My heart poured out to these ladies as I hugged them, wanting to share my love and hope for their recovery of the pain they felt inside. As I walked away, going to my car to make the drive home, all I could think was, WHAT CAN I DO TO GIVE BACK TO THE SURVIVORS of this horrible experience? A day of beauty? Then the thought came to me—Who would I get to help? And would the ladies come to the event? I noticed my doubt was as big as the fear they faced every day of their lives. That's when I realized, I'd work past the fear and do it anyway. My intention was to give back. Would I really find people that had the same com- passion in their hearts as I did? I contacted Diane xxxxx at Local 706 and was surprised how excited she was about the event. "A Day of Beauty: 706 Giving Back." Then I was really overwhelmed on the response I received. Eighty people stepped up wanting to help. These people wanted to do whatever it took to help the ladies of this hideous offense. The center wanted to keep it intimate. Twelve women were hand-picked for this day of beauty. I turned away a lot of help and confirmed six hair and six make-up. The room was too small to accommodate anymore people than that. I had 18 Local 706 members show up to the event just wanting to be a part. The venders I talked to all donated products and supplies. Each swag bag had $3,000 worth of goodies. After this experience I can say, if you get an idea and follow it through with the intention to just help another in need, Lord knows what the outcome will be. It this case, a day of beauty for ladies that have been through such a horrible time in their lives went off like clockwork. I want to thank everyone that called, showed up, gave a helping hand in any way. Blessings to each and every one of you. This renewed my faith back in the people I work with and that are best on the planet. You guys and gals are earth angels! Thank you too … • Virginia Isaias, President & Founder at the Human Trafficking Survivors Foundation (HTSF) • Aida Linn Villegas, Board member of the HTSF • Sharisse Fine for her help with getting the bags to put the swag in and support in organizing • Nigel's for supplies • Mindy Kaling for her book • Bill Wright for water and food supplies • Donisha Walker earrings for swag bag • Jodie Klutz Mann for the handmade candies • Laura LaRocca/LaRocca Skincare for the skin care • Hask for the shampoos for swag bag • Vicki Sullivan for the shampoos and skin care for swag bags • DJ Will Howell for great music • Justeen Ward for booking Elvis • Mark Wilde for doing Elvis • Kabir Hamid, Dena Hernandez and Gerry Welch for your inspirational speaking • Cases for Visual Arts for make-up mirrors • Renee Ferruggia for the Wheel of Fortune swag bags by Patricia Gundlach, Journeyman Hair Stylist A DAY OF BEAUTY: 706 Giving Back Continued on page 16

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