DEBARY, Fla. – For many teenage girls, their quinceañera is a time of celebration.
But for this week’s Getting Results Award winner, it came at a time of loss and sadness.
Angelica Delgado decided to forgo the traditional party and instead took the idea behind that teenage rite of passage is using it to give kids in need of the royal treatment.
Delgado is the owner of Princess For A Day in DeBary. The day spa caters to pre-teens, offering everything from “mini manicures” to hair and make-up for girls.
Behind the strip mall storefront, upbeat “Kidz Bop” and Disney soundtracks radiate from a set of speakers. The teen and young adult staff chat with their younger customers under a crystal chandelier.
Delgado sat behind a manicure table and applied pink polish to a little girl’s nails. “It takes patience and a lot of practice,” Delgado said, as she held a tiny brush between her fingers. “But that’s why we have nail polish remover,” she said with a laugh.
Delgado, 19, started the business four years ago with guidance from her mom, Diane.
“In 2015 I became a widow to Angelica’s daddy after being together for 32 years,” Diane Delgado explained. “Angelica was his princess. He was so involved with his daughter. He would always call her his princess.”
Raphael Delgado passed away just before Angelica’s 15th birthday. A traditional quinceañera was being planned.
“It entails a daughter and daddy dance and unfortunately her daddy couldn’t be there for that,” Diane Delgado said. “So Angelica did not want to celebrate it that way anymore.”
“Ever since I was little, my mom always taught me it’s super important to give back to the community and it’s something I find joy in doing,” Angelica said, revealing that she decided to take the money her family saved for a party and use it to take girls from nearby Florida United Methodist Children’s Home to Disney’s Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique, an experience she enjoyed as a child.
“I said well, if you do that you’ll only be able to do it once,” Diane Delgado said. “So I gave her the idea that we could open a small business and then have them come at no charge. She was delighted with the idea.”
Princess for a Day has partnered with Florida United Methodist Children’s Home and has offered free spa experiences to more than 60 kids since the spa opened.
Mark Cobia, Florida United Methodist Children’s Home director of communications, says the partnership has had an impact.
“The youth in our care have been traumatized by abuse, abandonment, or neglect,” Cobia said in an email. “In most cases, they have a very poor self-image as a result. Princess For A Day makes them feel special as they enjoy a spa experience that otherwise wouldn’t be possible.”
Angelica Delgado was nominated for the News 6 Getting Results Award by Tammy Barrineau.
“She is a wonderful mentor and example for teens in the community,” Barrineau said in her nomination. “I feel it’s about time she was recognized for all she’s done.”
Angelica is a sophomore at Stetson University where she is studying Business Administration. She hopes to one day franchise her business. Delgado has received the Volusia County Hero Award, Halo Award and philanthropic awards from her high school.
Princess For A Day offers an Adopt A Princess program where customers can donate towards the cost of treatments for underprivileged kids.
“I just hope younger girls can get something out of this and learn that regardless of things you’ve been through, that you can overcome them and turn hard times into something beautiful,” Angelica said.
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