Free Hugs Day 2012by Paul Mitchell Schools on 9/18/2012
Who Doesn't Need a Hug These Days?
(September 18, 2012) An army of 16,000 Paul Mitchell Future Professionals took to the streets throughout the continental United States and Hawaii for the nationwide network's fourth annual Free Hugs Day.
Inspired by the Sick Puppies YouTube music video about Juan Mann’s popular Free Hugs campaign, Paul Mitchell Schools have held their own Free Hugs Days for the past few years, reaching out in their local communities to spread their positive message through a simple hug.
“Our Free Hugs campaign is just one of the many ways our future beauty professionals show their passion and compassion in their local communities,” said Paul Mitchell Schools Dean and Cofounder Winn Claybaugh. “As members of the beauty industry, we’re in the business of helping people look beautiful. More important, it’s part of our ‘be nice’ culture to help people feel beautiful.”
Dressed in their signature black outfits, carrying handmade “Free Hugs” signs, and naturally sporting fabulous styles, students and staff from the network’s 100 schools put down their combs and marched out the door, heading for plazas, parks, and other popular spots to offer hugs and make people’s day.
Events for day and night school students occured throughout the country, with many Paul Mitchell artists, educators, top executives, and superstars joining the students and staff at Free Hugs locations in their areas.
"One man that we hugged bought everyone in the school cookies! This really made us realize the impact of what we were doing and how powerful our message was."
~ Paul Mitchell The School Sherman Oaks
"Our Learning Leader and Future Professionals who gave out their Free Hugs at the Sentara Way Nursing Home were blessed more than the beautiful people they hugged."
~ Rudy & Kelly Academy, A Paul Mitchell Partner School
"We came across a lady buying lunch at the hot dog stand. She seemed like she was having a really bad day, so I walked right up to her and said, 'It looks like you need a hug, can I give you one?' I could tell by the look on her face that the hug I gave her made a huge impact as she started to cry. She said to me how much she really did need a hug today and have someone tell her that they cared.”
~ Safavi Institute Cosmetology and Esthetics, A Paul Mitchell Partner School
"At the Veterans Hospital, there was a man in a wheelchair with an oxygen tank in the corner that most of the group passed by because he wouldn't look at us and seemed like he wanted to be left alone. Finally someone went up to him and asked him if he wanted a hug. He looked up and immediately smiled and said sure. She gave him a big hug and he shut his eyes to take it all in. He then took her hand and said, "You look just like my granddaughter... thank you...you just made my day." Suddenly everyone understood why they were there and how powerful a hug could be. Needless to say, the man received several more hugs. As we headed down the hall, we heard again and again from the sick people and their visitors, "You just made my day!"
~ Paul Mitchell The School Fresno
See more Free Hugs Day photos in our Free Hugs Day 2012 photo album.
Watch Free Hugs Day videos on our Paul Mitchell Schools YouTube channel.
About Paul Mitchell Schools
At Paul Mitchell Schools, we believe that education is an adventure and the learning experience needs to be fun. Our instructors—we call them “learning leaders”—are trained to draw out the artist in every student and prepare them to compete in the real world. Through our annual “FUNraising” campaign, we’ve raised and donated millions of dollars in support of many charitable causes. We’ve built homes with Habitat for Humanity, fed thousands of African orphans, and supported the victims of AIDS, breast cancer, homelessness, abuse, and hundreds of other causes.
Established 30 years ago, the Paul Mitchell network is nearly 100,000 salons strong and in 81 countries worldwide; every professional hairdresser knows the Paul Mitchell name. Now, with the arrival of Paul Mitchell Schools, we’ve taken the world of cosmetology education by storm! Explore our website to learn more.
About the Free Hugs Campaign
Feeling depressed and lonely after numerous personal difficulties, Australian Juan Mann was deeply touched by a random hug from a stranger at a party. What began as one person giving hugs in a Sydney mall eventually evolved into a worldwide social movement of individuals offering hugs to strangers in public places. The campaign received international attention in 2006 as the result of a YouTube music video by Australian band Sick Puppies. For more information, visit the official Free Hugs Campaign Web site at www.freehugscampaign.org.