Each year, massage therapists across the nation participate in EveryBody Deserves a Massage Week, sponsored by Associated Bodywork & Massage Professionals.

The purpose of the week, held annually each July, is to raise the profile of the massage profession while simultaneously providing massage to deserving populations. This year the week was held July 19 to 25.

Events organized by massage therapists included these:

• Dawn M. Dillon at Verona Salon in Plymouth, Massachusetts, gave free chair massage at local businesses in exchange for $10 donations to benefit the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. She raised $250.

• Carl W. Brown organized a free massage and bodywork event at the Rossmoor retirement community in Walnut Creek, California. He and six other therapists stayed busy massaging people for six hours, many of whom had never had massage before.
• Christina Hildebrandt and two other therapists collected $115 for Alternatives for Youth in Longmont, Colorado.
• Dianne Bohr of Santa Rosa, California offered craniosacral massage at The Living Room, a day center for homeless and at-risk women and children.
• In Baltimore, Maryland, the Reid Stress Management & Massage Center Spa celebrated the week with discounted and free massage. Stephanie Reid was the organizer.
• In Houston, Texas, Hands on Therapy celebrated the week by seeking five nominees who deserved a free massage for a variety of reasons, including those suffering an illness or those who were not able to afford a massage. Dianne Gilbert was the organizer.
• Laura Ward and three other therapists held an event at a vegetarian coffee house in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, to benefit those facing job loss and economic hardship.

• Lisa Highley and Pam Petersen of Idaho Springs and Black Hawk, Colorado, participated in an Idaho Springs event by offering chair massage to gather donations to Charlie’s Place Animal Shelter.