The opportunity knocked when Michelle "Mitch" Alvarez invited me to conduct a short nail art workshop for her outreach program -- I Speak, I Love, I am. It is Mitch's personal project that aims to empower teenage girls by providing creative and fun activities for them.
Michelle is the International Day of the Girl Ambassador of the Asia Pacific Region on the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. She is also affiliated with the Girl Scouts of the Philippines. It was a pleasure to have helped with her amazing project.
Mitch chose to help the girls of Tahanan Sta. Luisa, a shelter for abused and exploited girls.
"Our goal is to help sexually and physically abused street girls to recover, reconnect with their families if feasible, and prepare them for independent living." -- Tahanan Sta. Luisa
They provide a home and other basic needs for physically or sexually abused and prostituted street girls in hope that one day, they will be able to gain strength from their horrid past and live independently.
My job for the day was to conduct a nail art session for the girls. The challenge was to do it in an hour. It was nearly impossible but I had to at least try. It was far from my usual workshop setup. I asked the girls to sit down on the floor and get a chair to act as their working area. Each one received a nail art kit that contained the following:
- nail art brush
- dotting tool
- nail polish remover
- nail file
- cotton pads
- orange sticks
- base coat
- top coat
- nail polish
- acrylic paints
In behalf of Michelle, her friends, and the girls of Tahanan Sta. Luisa, thank you very much to Dazzle Dry Philippines for generously sponsoring all the base coat, top coat, and nail polishes. Dazzle Dry is the best option for nail art workshops since drying time will never be a problem. The girls can almost immediately start nail art painting after applying polish. What is even more amazing is that there was no irritating smell that other brands emit. (Please read my Dazzle Dry review here.)
It was a delightful sight to see the girls eager to play with the tools once we handed out the kits to them. They got so excited I had a hard time controlling the pace of the tutorial. But it was okay because I'd rather they explore their creativity instead of merely following my nail art tutorial. That day, I showed them how to do cupcake nails!
Here is one of the girls wearing Dazzle Dry Amber Glow:
I made a simple slideshow to share with you how the outreach program went. Perhaps this is a better way to take a glimpse of what transpired that day.
The last time I did something like this was back in college and that was almost 2 decades ago. I wish I had more time with the girls. But I am very thankful to be part of this meaningful event. It made me realize a lot of things, particularly appreciating my life more and to answer opportunities to share blessings.
And should I mention that gaining new friends was a perk, too? :)
From left: Em, (Oh no, forgot her name!), Kash, Me, Mitch, Prei, and Tetoy
Finally, thank you very much to my friend Roz Racca for tagging along to take in-charge of documenting the event for me. I feel really lucky to be surrounded by good friends. All photos used for this article and the slideshow is courtesy of Roz.
P.S. Tahanan Sta. Luisa is accepting donations in cash and in kind. Please visit their website here for more details.