Our Vancouver

Beauty Night's Carolyn MacGillivray nominated for a CBC Gem award

Cathy Brown nominated Carolyn MacGillivray of Beauty Night for her unwavering commitment to improving the lives and literally touching the people who live in poverty in our city.

Life and wellness non-profit has been lifting the lives of women for 16 years

Nominated for our #YoureAgem contest 7:07

Throughout the month of February, CBC Vancouver asked the public to nominate Good Samaritans deserving of recognition for their good deeds and to share them to @cbcvancouver using the hashtag #YoureAGem.

Submissions highlighting how generous family members, friends and do-gooders have positively impacted their community flooded in via Twitter and Instagram.

Today, CBC is recognizing Vancouver's Carolyn MacGillivray as one of the top nominees.

MacGillivray is the founder and executive director of Beauty Night, a program dedicated to transforming the lives of impoverished women across Vancouver.

Beauty Night has brought wellness, life development and makeover programs to shelters, drop-in centres, health care facilities and transitional housing four nights a week for the past 15 years.

Cathy Browne — the woman who nominated MacGillivray — says once she learned of the contest, it took "about a second" to think of Carolyn as a deserving bright light in out city.

"I've seen Beauty Night in action and the results and the faces of the women and the youth she's helped over the years. Look at the tag line — dignity is beautiful — there are so many ways to give a person dignity. It's not just a make-over — it's pride and courage and confidence instilled in these people."

Beauty Night promotes wellness through hairstyling and makeup to impoverished women in the Lower Mainland. (Ken Villeneuve )

MacGillivray's organization has been going into shelters and community centres since 2000. 

"It started because I just wanted to make someone feel better," said MacGillivray. I was volunteering at shelter and a women wanted to curl her hair and because of the injuries she sustained could not. I did it for her and she said I not only made her look good — she felt touched and human."

The contact with the clients helps in many other ways. Some of them have gone on to work with the companies that help provide the make-up and beauty products. A number of volunteers have gone on to meaningful work helping people in the Downtown Eastside.

Beauty Night has helped over 60,000 people over the years.

Click here to watch both Carolyn and Cathy in conversation with Gloria Macarenko on Our Vancouver