Monday, March 08, 2010


Beyoncé spoke in downtown Brooklyn, New York, at the Phoenix House, a nonprofit recovery center for drug and alcohol addiction, to unveil a project she and her mother, Tina, have dreamed of and worked on for years: the Beyoncé Cosmetology Center. According to the press release, the program is "a seven-month cosmetology training course for adult men and women." L'Oréal has donated all the products to be used at the center, and their spokeswoman Beyoncé, along with her mother, have pledged to donate $100,000 annually.

After brief remarks by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Tina Knowles, among others, Beyoncé graciously took to the podium to explain both her ties to the house — she first visited in 2007 as part of research for her role as Etta James in "Cadillac Records" — and her hopes for the program.

While Phoenix House provides varied vocational training, "I felt like they needed something that was geared towards women — something that would teach them skills that would give them hope even after the Phoenix House," Beyoncé explained about why she chose to fund a beauty school. Her mother also owned and operated a salon in Knowles' hometown of Houston.

"I saw that a salon was a place for women to socialize, share stories, cry, laugh and get advice," she continued about her experiences growing up around a beauty parlor. She was close to tears as she added, "Most importantly, I saw the joy it brought my mother, knowing she was a part of their transformation."

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