After three days of learning, networking and recharging members’ minds and hearts at the beautiful Terranea resort, ISBN’s 2016 Conference ended with a warm and fuzzy hug. Known as Cocktails & Cuddles, the final event invited attendees to join together to dress and stuff 160 bears for disadvantaged kids in Southern California. That and the following party were sponsored by the L’Oréal Professional brands—L’Oréal Professionnel, Redken, Matrix, Mizani, Pureology and Essie.
“The Cocktails and Cuddles event was fun! It brought out our competitive spirit with other attendees that we didn’t know or didn’t know well, and it gave us the opportunity to form new relationships,” says Lisa Walt, vice president of Design 1 Salon Spa in Grand Rapids, MI. “Best of all, it warmed our hearts to be able to do something and make something that will benefit children in need. Cocktails & Cuddles definitely made a memory for me!”
Adds Debra Penzone, president of Charles Penzone, Inc. in Columbus, OH, “Cocktails & Cuddles was an amazing team-building experience with salon owners, vendors and guests—all to give kids in need a huggable bear to love! We all had so much fun trying to figure out the quotes so we could go get all the materials to complete the cuddly bear! In our beauty industry, we are so creative and also love fashion, so my highlight was picking out the head-to-toe outfit for my team’s bear! It was such a great new experience and it felt so good to give my love to the bear that will certainly make a difference in a child’s life!”
“About 27% of children in LA County are hungry,” says Tara Nierenhausen, executive director of Community’s Child, which distributed the ISBN bears. “As we work to wipe out that hunger, we also want to lift the spirits of children who are homeless, disadvantaged or never receive any type of gift.”