Beauty, Fashion & Empowerment at Beauty Night’s Celebrate Dignity Gala

Beauty Night Society

Photo credit: Ken Villeneuve

Giving thanks to those who have helped us along the way, isn’t that what Christmas is all about? Whether you show this through gifts, or you prefer to show it through memories, the importance thing is to reflect on those who are meaningful to you. Be it your parents, your best friends, your spouse, your dog or even an organization that was monumental in your life.

The women who have been supported by the Beauty Night Society decided to give their thanks via a fashion show at the organization’s 12th year anniversary. Excited by this idea, founder Caroline MacGillivray was even more thrilled when Aaron Cruikshank of the Hive Vancouver showed interest in supporting the cause.

“On behalf of Beauty Night Society, we are honored to be the Hive’s charity of choice for their first charitable gala. It’s wonderful to have the whole community come together. We are grateful for this.”

Caroline MacGillivray

Photo source: WE Vancouver

And so it was decided. On Saturday, December 15th, Beauty Night celebrates its anniversary with Celebrate Dignity Gala at the Hive Vancouver. Hosted by Jessica Holmes Canadian motivational speaker and comedian (Royal Canadian Air Farce) this special evening will feature an eco fashion show modeled by twelve women who have participated in the Beauty Night program.

Tickets are $50 with all proceeds from this fundraiser supporting the Beauty Night Society in fulfilling its mission and expanding its wellness programming. In addition to the fashion show, there will be entertainment, a wine reception, a selection of hors d’oeuvres and desserts from PiDGiN Restaurant, door prizes and a raffle draw.

Jessica Holmes, who will be the acting Emcee of the evening actually cold called Heather to be a part of this event.

“I was reading about the event online and got chills.  For twenty years, my mother’s been a counselor at a Rape Crisis Centre, and I grew up being very aware of women in need, and how we can all lend a hand to help people heal.  Laughter, makeup, respect – it all goes a long way to supporting women in need.”

Jessica is known for her role in Royal Canadian Air Farce but has many other achievements under her belt. She has opened for comedians like Jerry Seinfeld, Leslie Nielsen, and Ellen DeGeneres, as well as hosted events for such visionaries as Deepak Chopra, Tony Robbins, and Oprah Winfrey.

There will also be some other empowering women at the event including Miss World Canada National Finalist of 2013, Kristiana Banden, who lives by the words, “with vision, focus, and hard work anything is possible.” This is significant in the case of the Celebrate Dignity Gala because of the interest she has taken in learning the background about how Beauty Night Society started. She is impressed with MacGillivray for taking her vision, focus and hard work and bringing the Society to its 12th year of helping women living in poverty with self-esteem and life skills to help change their lives.

“I am excited to be part of this event because this is the Hive’s first event in support of a local foundation. I strongly believe in giving back and paying it forward. The Hive has a great opportunity of not only bringing the community together in celebration but also in supporting great local causes. I am honoured to be part of this celebration and to help in any way I can to bring awareness to both the Hive and the Beauty Night Society.”

There will be plenty of entertainment during the evening including a special performance between Lori Watt and her real life hero and mentor, her father, Joseph Cairns.

“It is an honour and a privilege to be asked to perform for such a worthwhile cause. I spend a good deal of time working towards ending violence against women and children and any event or organization that provides wellness services in a safe and empowering environment is worthy of my time and attention. I’m also very much looking forward to performing with my father again!”

Lori has been singing, dancing and acting since she was a young girl and has since performed in many plays, including Lost in Twine as part of the Fringe Festival. Her upcoming acts include The Vagina Monologues as well as A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant & A Prayer at the Frederic Wood Theatre at UBC. Joseph has been playing guitar most of his life, mainly in the UK and North America.  He studied classical, flamenco and jazz and has experience as a session musician, touring musician, solo performer and teacher. Some past highlights include playing in Montreal at Expo and touring Canada’s major cities with the European Vienna Ice Review.

Cheryl Brewster will also take the stage for part of the night addressing the crowd about increasing one’s effectiveness personally and professionally, among other topics. She is one of Vancouver’s most sought after and respected Professional and Corporate Intuitives with established clients like Starbucks and Christian Dior. Cheryl is internationally renowned for her unique approach as a consultant, speaker and coach. Read more about what she does online: The Intuitive Life.

The fundraiser will bring together the Beauty Night community as well as local organizations and businesses including: Hive Vancouver, Lonsdale Event Rentals, Au Soleil Spa and Salon, The Pint Public House, Mills Basics, Cartems Donuterie, MCNG Marketing, Pizzazz Modeling (Dale), Coleseum Medi Spa, My Sister’s Closet, Tip Top Tailors and PiDGin Restaurant.

To purchase tickets to the Celebrate Dignity Gala,click here.

About Beauty Night Society

Beauty Night’s mission is to build self-esteem and change lives for women and youth living in poverty. This is done by creating life makeovers for impoverished mothers, at-risk youth, seniors and sex workers through three streams of programming: wellness, makeovers and life skills. Founded in 2000, Beauty Night has given over 26,000 life makeovers to foster positive self-image, motivate inner self-renewal and reintroduce healthy touch. It started as one event, now flourishing as four, volunteer-run weekly events that provide beauty and wellness services in a safe and empowering environment.

The organization has grown from its first Beauty Night (14 volunteers and served 73 women) to offer programs four nights a week (serving 200 each week). Thanks to 500+ volunteers, Beauty Night has given over 26, 000 makeovers in 12 years. The joy, friendship and laughter connects the community together.


On December 15th, 2000 (12 years ago), the first Beauty Night was held at WISH Drop in Centre in Vancouver’s DTES. A local actress and writer, Caroline MacGillivray started volunteering at WISH in the summer of 2000. She was researching a role for an upcoming film. One night, a woman came in who had had a bad day. She did not want to eat, speak or assistance with housing, bad date sheet or shelter for the night – she wanted to “feel clean.”

After having a shower, the woman picked up a curling iron that had been donated to the centre. She was unable to bring her arms up to curl her hair. Caroline offered to do this for her. With simple kindness, friendship was born. The woman left walking taller and seemed to have an extra bounce in her step. After repeated requests for makeovers from other women, Caroline proposed a “beauty night”.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s