A beauty business owner is taking the opportunity to help women going through tough times in the Clutha district.
Balclutha local Shelly Howat, who owns Beauty At 45, put her own twist on Look Good, Feel Better — the nonprofit organisation in New Zealand dedicated to assisting women who are going through or recovering from chemotherapy.
Ms Howat has taken part in a Look Good, Feel Better event before and knew she wanted to do it in Balclutha.
‘‘I absolutely loved making the women look amazing and feel great about themselves at the time, and I wanted our local women to feel that feeling too,’’ she said.
‘‘I really kicked into gear when I had a client in December last year who was going through chemo and I didn’t even know at the time until she told me, and she explained the validating feeling of me just touching her face and how it made her feel.
‘‘Along with that, my lovely father went through chemotherapy and he used to call me in with my little pampering kit for his hands because it was one of the only things that would make him feel at ease.
‘‘It’s very dear to my heart, so I knew I had to bring this to Balclutha.’’
Ms Howat is hosting free one-on-one sessions with women who are up for a pampering session and she gifts them with beauty-related treats.
‘‘Through the process of finding out who in Balclutha was having a hard time I know of seven so far. I find it really sad but I also hope what I’m doing will bring them some comfort and support during their hard times,’’ she said.
Ms Howat’s business has had hundreds of responses and other local businesses have jumped in and provided gifts for her clients.
The official organisation declined to visit Balclutha last year to set up Look Good, Feel Better sessions when she had previously attempted to set it up, but after seeing Ms Howat take on the role herself, the organisation will officially be coming down on August 30.
‘‘I’m stoked to see the official organisation come on board, because even the number we have at present is too many,’’ Ms Howat said.
‘‘It shows how amazing our community is every time we need to band together to make things happen, we go above and beyond in the district.’’
She said people were welcome to give her a message on her website or Facebook and let her know of anyone they knew was struggling with chemotherapy who she could help, and to direct them to the official date on Wednesday, August 30 at Te Pou o Mata-Au — Clutha District Memorial & Community Centre between 1pm and 3pm.