Like dozens of other hair stylists in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows, Ian McDonnell is anxiously awaiting word about when he can reopen his salon for business.
But his opening day, whenever that is, will be a bit different than most in the industry.
McDonnell owns Spin Hair Salon in the 20400-block of Lougheed Highway in Maple Ridge, and when he finally gets confirmation as to when he and his team can open the doors again for business, he and his daughter are going to mark Day One with a fundraiser.
Further, he’s hoping fellow hair stylists around town will jump on the proverbial band wagon.
“I am trying to organize a charitable movement for the Friends In Need Food Bank,” he told The News.
As soon as the province started talking about relaxing the COVID restrictions and phasing in a restart plan for businesses, McDonnell started getting calls from clients anxious to book appointments.
“As we’ve been anticipating getting back to work our clients have been contacting us wondering if they can make appointments. It’s been hard all around, hairdressers feel a keen closeness to their clientele, we have missed them, and we rely on them so much. It is tough not to be able to give them a clear picture of when we will return and what the salon experience will be like when we do return,” he said.
Until he gets a confirmation date for reopening, however, he can’t make any appointments. McDonnell admitted his initial plan was to give first dibs to those whose appointments were cancelled back in March – when the industry was shut down. Afterall, he said, that was the only fair thing to do.
“But one of my best friends had, what I think, is a great idea,” he said.
Instead, he’s going to auction off to the highest bidders the first day’s appointments with both himself and his daughter, Teshia Bohemier, who’s also a stylist at his salon. And in addition to contributing all the money from the auction, the duo will also be donating their earnings from that day to the food bank.
“My daughter and I just thought it might be a nice way to give back to an overwhelmed local charity that more and more people are relying on,” said McDonnell, who’s been cutting hair since 1986 and opened SPIN six years ago.
“Many have suffered financially due to the need to self isolate. Many have had to rely on the local food bank to be able to feed their families… Whomever pledges to give our local Friends In Need Food Bank the largest donation, will get a spot at the front of the queue for myself and my daughter Teshia Erin Bohemier, when we return to work.”
They’re taking bids for the Day One appointments on the Spin’s Facebook page.
Expecting to see between four and six clients each during that first day, McDonnell said he’s unsure how much money they’ll raise for the food bank that day, but he is challenging other local salons and hair stylists to consider doing something similar for the cause.
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