Getting a haircut may seem like a simple thing to most of us but to the poor families we serve it is often a heavy burden. Haircuts run about $5 or $6 in Juarez, which is a day’s wage for many. The schools, both public and private, have very strict rules regarding boys’ hair. It has to be kept very short or else the child gets sent home. If a family has two or three boys in school, you can see how difficult it is to comply with the regulations.
Francisco, who helps us at the Lord’s Food Bank in Juarez, saw the great need in this area. He took a training class so that he could offer haircuts to the boys for free. Another volunteer, Rafaela, knows how to cut girls’ hair and wants to offer her services too. There are no school rules regarding the length of girls’ hair, but they are required to keep it neat and clean.
Francisco giving free haircuts to the boys.
At the moment we are borrowing a salon chair but we hope to buy our own for the Food Bank and make a little barbershop room, complete with a proper sink where we can wash the children’s hair. Head lice can be a real problem among the kids since families cannot afford to bathe or wash hair often, and sometimes the girls go a long time without getting a shampoo.
Receiving an education is such a key to breaking the cycle of poverty and we want to do all we can to make sure these kids can stay in school — including getting them haircuts!