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Making a Difference, One Lipstick at a Time
Whether it's a perfectly timed doorbell ring, a buzzer-beater to win a tied game, or the school bell to end class, there are lots of ways we've all been "saved by the bell." At the M⋅A⋅C counter in our Downtown Seattle store, a bell ring means something a little different—a life-saving donation to the M⋅A⋅C AIDS Fund.
We love this program because it enables us to partner with customers to give back and help address an issue that impacts every community.
—Rachel Delgado, M⋅A⋅C Counter manager, Nordstrom Downtown Seattle
Creating the M⋅A⋅C AIDS Fund
Since 1994, the M⋅A⋅C AIDS Fund (also known as MAF) has been dedicated to helping people affected by HIV and AIDS, regardless of their age, race or gender. The MAF provides essential funding and support to organizations that are addressing the battle with HIV/AIDS around the world.
What makes the MAF unique is the work it's doing to highlight the link between poverty and HIV/AIDS. By focusing on programs that deal with the most marginalized, stigmatized and under-heard victims, MAF has been able to improve the services that are made available to these underserved populations. These programs include:
• Providing stable housing, an essential component to ongoing access to healthcare;
• Addressing the unique needs of older people living with HIV/AIDS;
• Supporting harm reduction programs, such as syringe exchanges; and
• Delivering programs and services that are aimed specifically at women, a group that's at increased risk of contracting HIV/AIDS.
To date, MAF has invested more than $315 million in groundbreaking HIV/AIDS programs, which makes it the largest corporate, non-pharmaceutical supporter of HIV/AIDS services. How'd they do it? It's all thanks to a tube of lipstick.
To provide funding for the MAF, M⋅A⋅C created VIVA GLAM, a line of bright and bold lipsticks and lipglasses. Every cent of the selling price of VIVA GLAM goes toward helping men, women and children who are living with or affected by HIV/AIDS.
In 2013, Nordstrom donated $1.1 million to HIV/AIDS organizations from the sales of M⋅A⋅C VIVA GLAM products, bringing our grand total to $12 million since 1997. "We love this program because it enables us to partner with customers to give back and help address an issue that impacts every community," said Rachel Delgado, M⋅A⋅C Counter manager at our Downtown Seattle store. "We wanted a fun way to recognize our customers who participate, which is why we ring the bell and cheer after every VIVA GLAM purchase."
And while one lipstick or lipglass might not seem like much, each can have a really big impact. Just one VIVA GLAM purchase can provide:
• 8 individually tailored, nutritious, home-cooked meals for a person living with HIV/AIDS
• 1 month of public transportation for a woman to travel to and from doctors' offices
• 1 HIV-prevention workshop conducted by a health educator
• 1 pair of shoes for a child orphaned by HIV/AIDS
• 233 male condoms or 23 female condoms
• 1 rapid oral HIV test
• 18 personalized birthday cakes to be hand-delivered to a person living with HIV/AIDS on his or her birthday
According to the MAF website, "The idea of VIVA GLAM was to celebrate life and the outspoken attitude of the company. It was, and continues to be, the signature and the heart and soul of the company."
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