The University of Maine Honors College
Project Abstract/ Summary
Leigh Boyle will share her story of The Lipstick Project, which grew out of her 2010 volunteer work in a women's hospital in Northern Ethiopia. The hospital cares for women with obstetric fistula, a condition resulting from prolonged, obstructed labor that leaves women chronically incontinent and ostracized. Leigh began giving weekly manicures to the isolated women, an act that proved life-giving for all. Upon returning home to Vancouver, Leigh saw similar need for restorative work in modern healthcare and established The Lipstick Project, a woman run volunteer organization that provides free, professional spa treatments to people in hospice and hospitals during the last days of their lives. The name "Lipstick Project" was derived from a mysterious crate of lipstick that appeared during the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp in 1945. A British officer at the liberation described the lipstick as an act of "unadulterated brilliance." Leigh's work is likewise brilliant.
The University of Maine Honors College, "The Lipstick Project" (2017). Cultural Affairs Distinguished Lecture Series. 359.