More Than 180 Haircuts Given At Homeless Stand Down
The last to leave Saturday's Homeless Stand Down at Cleveland's Public Auditorum were the barbers.
The Homeless Stand Down is an annual, one-day event put together by HandsOn Northeast Ohio for people experiencing homelessness.
Volunteers from numerous organizations distributed donated boots, coats and other cold-weather clothing. They provided hot meals, health care services -- and even haircuts.
"I asked [the barber], 'Hey, would you make me look like a new person?' He said when he's done, you're a new man. And I am,'" said Perry Mitchell, who added that he became homeless on Christmas Day.
The Homeless Stand Down officially ran from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., but some of the volunteer barbers stayed until 3:15 p.m. to serve every person in line.
Alexx Major is a student at LaBarberia Institute of Hair. Carri Ellis was Major's last client of the day.
"I love it," Ellis said. "I'm grateful that they were able to fit me in to cut it."
Ellis started experiencing homeless two years ago. She said came to Cleveland Public Auditorium hoping for a pair of warm boots and a haircut, but she wasn't sure the barbers would have enough time for her.
Major made sure to squeeze her in.
"Honestly, giving back is part of being a barber sometimes. It's not about money. It's about making people smile," Major said. "You don't know whose life you're changing, but I know it makes me feel good making somebody smile."
Barbers from LaBarberia, Meryma'at Barber College, Urban Kutz Barbershop volunteered their time to give free haircuts.