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Business Profile: Hair Stylist, Darralyn

Darralyn

Darralyn

Explain exactly what you business is.         

I’m in the beauty industry.

What type of services or products do you offer?

I perform all phases of hair care; however, I specialize in natural hair. I use products containing natural ingredients like sea kelp, vanilla bean etc, that add shine and promote growth and health, and that are free of parabens and sulfates and other ingredients which have been shown to be harmful.

Why did you start this particular business?

I’ve always been intrigued by fashion and hair makes a statement in fashion all its own, from there I learned the importance of beautifying hair in the most healthy way.

What in your background or what did you have to do to prepare for this business?

I always welcome a challenge; I have a creative mind so those things along with education and experience allow me to assist clients with special circumstance to abusive their desired results

What are the special or unique features of your business that distinguish you or are different from your competitors?

In this area I’ve heard that clients with locks or other natural hairstyles must travel a distance, but I do service those clients.

If, through this article you could reach out and touch just one person and aid them in turning their lives around, what would you say?

I would stress the importance of regular maintenance if only once per month or at least every 6 weeks have a professional look at your scalp to help alleviate long term damage from dryness, buildup, split ends or other conditions that may not be really detected

Miss UVI’s First to Bring Home National Hall of Fame Crown

miss-uvi-nbca-gown_2014_300Miss UVI Elisa Thomas made history when she won the title of Miss National Black College Alumni (NBCA) Hall of Fame – becoming the first Miss UVI to win that crown. Thomas competed against 20 other college queens from Historically Black Colleges and Universities from across the nation on Sept. 27, in Atlanta. In addition to winning the crown, Thomas won the “Hats and Heels” segment of the competition.

“Being crowned Miss National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame is an amazing feeling,” said Thomas. “To hear my name and school be called literally brought tears to my eyes. I’m proud that I was able to achieve this national recognition not only for the prestigious University of the Virgin Islands, but also for the United States Virgin Islands.” She continued, “I’m honored to represent an organization geared toward the relevance of Historically Black Colleges and Universities, promoting African American achievement, individual school pride and collective HBCU pride.”

“We are elated Elisa will be representing our HBCUs during the next twelve months as Miss Hall of Fame,” said Thomas Dortch, Jr., NBCA Hall of Fame Foundation founder and board chairman. “She has proven herself to be very capable of conveying the message of educational excellence that our HBCUs send. I am also happy that the University was able to have one of its queens to hold this coveted title.”

“I am extremely proud of Elisa Thomas, Miss UVI, for achieving this outstanding honor of being selected as Miss National Black College Alumni Hall of Fame,” said UVI President Dr. David Hall. “She represented UVI in an excellent way, and now she will represent Historically Black Colleges and Universities.” He continued, “When we consider the number of HBCUs and the important role they have played in the past and will continue to play in the future, this honor takes on an even greater significance. Elisa’s accomplishment is a compelling reminder that UVI prepares our students to take on and lead the world.”

“The entire UVI Division of Student Affairs is especially proud of Elisa,” said Doris Battiste, dean of students on the St. Thomas Campus. “This is something that we dreamed of for many years and we finally got it. We believe that she will represent UVI and the NBCA Hall of Fame well during her reign.”

“This win increases awareness that our students are second to none,” said Battiste. “Although we are geographically isolated from other HBCUs, our students measure up and do very well academically and socially. They assume leadership positions locally, regionally, nationally and internationally and serve their communities admirably.”

Thomas traveled to the Miss NBCA Hall of Fame Queens competition in Atlanta with UVI Student Activities Supervisor Leon Lafond and UVI Chaperone Marisel Melendez. She also had a group of 10 supporters, including two integral camp members Sheldon Turnbull and Lorna Freeman that assisted her in the journey and attend the show.

“To see Elisa successfully advance in the competition was superb,” said Lafond. “The various standing ovations that she got from her talent during the preliminaries and the final competition definitely spoke for itself. She is the true definition of a queen.”

Lafond thanked “Team Bubbles” – Thomas’ team of supporters who assisted her during the competition. “Without everyone’s support, none of this would be possible,” he said. “Team work makes the dream work.”

Thomas is a communication major at UVI. She said that her communications classes solidified her presentation skills.

“Communications has definitely helped me,” said Thomas, who plans to own and host her own talk show. She also plans to start an organization geared toward pre-adolescent girls entitled the “Building Blocks of Empowerment,” become a published writer and start a college fund for students in need of financial assistance. “I just think it’s imperative that we always ask ourselves what we can do for others, because any of us would not be where we are today, if it wasn’t for someone assisting us along the way,” she said.

The NBCA queen contestants are judged in four categories, including talent, poise, image and personal and private interviews. In the interviews the contestant has up to two minutes to introduce herself and discuss her platform. As Miss NBCA Hall of Fame, Thomas will serve as a national representative and advocate of HBCUs, and was awarded an academic scholarship and other prizes.

“Elisa is unquestionably a person who is the essence of beauty and intellect,” said Prince Brown, NBCA Hall of Fame Foundation executive director. “We look very much forward to having her represent us.”

During her reign as Miss NBCA Hall of Fame, Thomas plans to be an advocate promoting the importance of HBCU’s, serve as an effective panellist at the various seminars, campus tours and the events she attends. She will also promote more awareness and preventative measures to Domestic Violence. Her platform as Miss UVI and Miss NBCA Hall of Fame is “Combatting domestic violence by Building Stronger Women from a Young Age.” “If I’m able to positively influence at least one person, then I feel I have efficiently carried out my duty as a true queen – a humble servant,” said Thomas.

The NBCA queens competition is sponsored by the NBCA Hall of Fame organization, which is dedicated to the growth and development of HBCUs through scholarships, internships, training and technical assistance, alumni recognition, and programs to encourage humanitarian involvement.

The California Wellness Foundation Announces Launch of its Advancing Wellness Grants Program

Woodland Hills, CAThe California Wellness Foundation (Cal Wellness) today announced the launch of its new Advancing Wellness grants program designed to promote equity through advocacy and access. The grantmaking will focus on three interconnected portfolios: Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care; Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods; and Expanding Education and Employment Pathways. The grants program also includes the Opportunity Fund to support innovation in the nonprofit and philanthropic sectors.

“We are excited to launch the next phase of our grantmaking,” said Judy Belk, president and CEO of The California Wellness Foundation.  “Advancing Wellness builds on the Foundation’s long history of responding to the needs of California communities and addressing the root causes of health and wellness inequities.”

The process for submitting letters of interest to the Foundation has been streamlined with the introduction of an online grants application process to increase efficiency and support grantees’ efforts. Grantseekers can apply here.

Building upon its legacy, the Foundation remains committed to responsive, statewide grantmaking; core operating support; funding of direct services, public policy and capacity building; and improving the health of underserved populations.

Grants made under the Bridging the Gaps in Access and Quality Care portfolio will be related to: the equitable implementation of the Affordable Care Act; the health care safety net; oral health care for low-income adults, including seniors; and increasing diversity in the health care professions.

Grants made under the Promoting Healthy and Safe Neighborhoods portfolio will be related to: ensuring that effective systems, infrastructures and resources are in place to support healthy living and to minimize trauma and injury resulting from violence, particularly gun violence.

Grants made under the Expanding Education and Employment Pathways portfolio will be related to: charting a path to greater access to resources, opportunities, and support for adolescents and young adults whom Cal Wellness defines as “resilient youth,” i.e., young people who are in, or have exited, the juvenile justice system; are current or former foster youth; have been or are currently homeless or runaways; or are pregnant and/or parenting youth. The goals of this portfolio are also to ensure that there is access to sufficient income and other resources through fair employment and appropriate government benefits, as well as the building and protection of financial assets for resilient youth, military veterans and formerly incarcerated adults.

The Opportunity Fund will support capacity building, public policy and innovation among nonprofit agencies and philanthropic organizations working to improve the health of Californians.

To view a video and other materials on the grantmaking program, please visit the CalWellness.org newsroom.

The California Wellness Foundation is a private independent foundation created in 1992 with a mission to improve the health of the people of California by making grants for health promotion, wellness education and disease prevention. Since its founding in 1992, Cal Wellness has awarded 7,523 grants totaling more than $899 million.