Short cuts to self esteem

Danielle Hannah and Teresa Reed (The Catholic Leader)

Two hairdressers in Brisbane’s north are taking their scissors to the streets, offering free haircuts to the homeless, The Catholic Leader reports.

Working out of a mobile van, Danielle Hannah and Teresa Reed, of Jack Reed Barber Shop, Scarborough, have set themselves a mission of giving 1000 free haircuts by the end of this year.

“Fresh hair and a shave can feel like a fresh start, which can be a big deal to someone who’s going through a pretty rough time,” Ms Hannah, who believes a good haircut can build self-image and feelings of self-worth, resulting in a sense of dignity and positivity, said.

“Everyone likes to feel like they look good, but for a person experiencing homelessness a haircut can mean the difference between social isolation and inclusion.”

The hairdressing pair’s small mobile van is built in retro style to resemble an old-fashioned barber shop. It is air conditioned, with two barber chairs.

More than $70,000 to cover costs has come the Queensland government’s Dignity First Fund – a program designed to help people survive homelessness with dignity – and the support of local sponsors.

“It will enable us to deliver an authentic barbering experience to some of the most marginalised members of our community,” Ms Hannah said.

“But it’s also about feeling like you’re part of a community.

“When you spend time at the barbers, it’s not just about coming away looking good, you also spend time in conversation getting to know people, hearing their stories and sharing their experience.”


Meet the hairdressers aiming to give 1000 free haircuts to the homeless this year (The Catholic Leader)

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