Kid Proof

A spa in Massachusetts does its part to shield children from the potentially deadly effects of the sun.

A Massachusetts spa/skin center opens its arms to children with melanoma.

In an effort to spread the word about sun protection for children, South Shore Skin Center and Spa in Plymouth, Massachusetts, recently partnered with the Children’s Melanoma Prevention Foundation (CMPF) for a Sunbeams and Snowflakes Day of Beauty and Open House fundraiser.

Established in 2003, CMPF is a nonprofit educational foundation dedicated to teaching children and their caregivers safe and proven methods of sun protection and skin cancer prevention. More than 75 people attended the event, helping to raise $15,000 through services, product sales, a silent auction, individual donations and a raffle. Representatives from CMPF were on hand throughout the day to provide information about the Foundation’s mission and program, and proceeds will help support CMPF’s innovative school-based program, “SunAWARE,” which is delivered free of charge to children from kindergarten through 12th grade in Massachusetts schools.

As one of Massachusetts’ most progressive dermatology practices, South Shore offers a wide range of medical, surgical and cosmetic services. It also provides caring personnel who are willing donate their time and skills to help prevent melanoma in children. In time for National Melanoma Awareness Month, we spoke with Dr. Richard Eisen, the founding physician and director of South Shore Skin Center about the event, and why CMPF was his charity of choice.

DAYSPA: Why did you choose to hold a fundraiser for Children’s Melanoma Prevention Foundation?
Dr. Richard Eisen: We’re a dermatology practice, so we treat a lot of skin cancer. We partnered with the Children’s Melanoma Prevention Foundation because it focuses on educating kids in schools about spending time in the sun, and provides a comprehensive program that teaches these students about skin cancer. We really believe that raising awareness for young people is important for decreasing the incidence [of the disease] in the future.

Is this the first time you’ve worked with CMPF?
No; we’ve worked with them before, but this is the first time we’ve held an event on-site that was sponsored specifically for them. Charles David Salon in Norwell holds a fundraiser every year for South Shore Hospital, so I thought I’d use that model and we’d donate the proceeds of a day’s work to the Foundation.

Tell us about the big day. What were some of the highlights?
We performed full spa services, including facials, microdermabrasion treatments, laser treatments and Botox. We also auctioned off product-filled baskets of SkinMedica, SkinCeuticals and Vivete; a Coolibar sun protection clothing basket; a Charles David Salon day of beauty; a desk set including stationery and printer; and tickets to the Boston Symphony Orchestra! Everyone seemed to have a good time; they came in for an hour or two, spent some time walking around and participated in the silent auction. We also held educational programs in the spa while attendees were waiting for their treatments.

How did you promote the event?
Through the practice, primarily. We used Constant Contact to send an email blast to our client base, and alerts on Facebook. Our public relations company, PR Works, also publicized the event online. In-house, we had a lot of volunteers as well. The staff has always been interested in giving back—we have wonderful people—so it didn’t take much to get them excited about
the idea.

How did this community involvement affect your business?
I’m still in the process of looking over the numbers from the event as far as return visits, but I know that people were excited when they came in and the event did raise some awareness of our spa. Mainly it was existing clients, but there were some new people. Many clients brought their friends. Since the dermatology practice is attached to the spa, we refer patients back and forth. In the practice we do a lot of skin cancer prevention education and in the spa we sell several different types of sunscreens. I think that next year we’ll most likely do another event, either for this organization or a similar charity.


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