AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF)-Southern Barber college located in Augusta is giving men a second chance at life. They accept students that may have been incarcerated or received a felony conviction in the past. In order to graduate, they must complete 1500 hours in the barbershop whether it’s cutting hair or attending classes. As part of their hours’ students decided to practice their skills by giving out free haircuts to students going back to school. heron Garcia, a single father of four, says his two sons wanted to get their hair cut before going back to school.
Wayne Frazier who owns the barber college says what they’re doing means more than a hair cut.
“Some children come in and we allow them to do work around the barber school to get a haircut. We don’t turn anyone back because I think that our children need caring for no matter who their parents are they are still our children and they are the community’s children,” Frazier says.
As a school board member for Richmond County Frazier says that during his time as principal he realized kids need more than just a hair cut they need guidance.
“I believe that if we do that we would have a longer and lasting impact on the children. You know the hair cut, every week they’re going to need a haircut, so that goes away in about a week or so. But mentoring and nurturing them is a lifetime commitment,” Frazier added.
Theron Garcia was just one of many parents who brought their child to the barbershop to take advantage of the opportunity. He recently loss his job as a truck driver due to an illness that causes seizures. Not knowing how he would afford to pay for the haircuts, he came across an ad in the newspaper about Southern Barber college.
“There’s a lot of things going on in anybody’s life, even mine. Not being able to work it helps out a lot especially when going back to school,” Garcia says.
He says he’s grateful for the community that’s helping his boys go back to school with a fresh start.
“It feels good just overall for someone to give back to the community, regardless of what’s said and what’s done it’s just a blessing,” Garcia says.
Frazier says if he had a choice he would much rather offer students his time because he believes that’s what young men are missing more than anything else, nurturing from the community.
Garcia says his boys were pleased with their haircuts and he’s so grateful for the community stepping in to help.
“Overall it’s just a lot of things that play into it like you said it boosts your confidence, makes you feel better about yourself, and that’s what kids nowadays in school need. They need that ambition and actual feel like they’re important,”
Frazier says he would like for more people get involved in mentoring a child at least for a year as it relates to their academics, social, and emotional issues. If you would like to stop by the Southern Barber college to get your hair cut is located on 1276 Merry Street.