Now in it's tenth year, the Australian based charity Hair Aid is doing amazing things both internationally and in communities throughout Australia.
Founded by Selina Tomasich, in late 2008, in the back streets of Manila after meeting Sister Kate and Sister Claudia, Hair Aid’s international mission is to recruit and send volunteer hairdressers, from all around the world, to overseas locations to provide free hair cutting training for people living in critical poverty.
When Selina first told her story about Hair Aid to the team at Comfortel, they were deeply moved by the cause and wanted to help.
“We have a team of volunteer hairdressers or our ‘Hair Aid Family’ that travel to poverty areas of Philippines, Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam to work directly with people living on the street, slum communities, or with ladies rescued from the sex trade and prostitution gangs.
All volunteers teach a five day hair cutting course, that gives the skill to cut five basic haircuts. This skill can then be used to start a micro business and create an income to support themselves and their family” Selina says.
Comfortel are now supporting Hair Aid’s work and providing scissor kits for trainees. The Cutting Kits are a vital part of the cause, which allows the people in need, a pair of scissors, comb and sectioning clips in a handy carry case.
‘You have no idea how much this filled my heart’ Selina said. ‘No longer would I spend sleepless nights working out how to find enough tools for the 1500+ trainees Hair Aid trained a year. Without this valuable support our work is limited. Because of this valuable support from Comfortel, our work flourishes’.
Previously second hand tools were collected for all corners of the world and refurbished and reused. This was a huge task and needed extensive coordination and was resource intensive.
Donations from Excellent Edges scissors was a life saver but as the projects grew so did the need for more and more…and more.
Now, Hair Aid with the help of Comfortel has enough kits to continue gifting Cutting Kits until the end of 2020.
“Since the introduction of the Comfortel Cutting Kits, heart felt stories have like Ed emerged which have truly shown us that supporting a great cause can create much needed change” Lisa Feleppa, Brand Marketing Manager of Comfortel said.
Ed Sudaria was a trainee and someone stole his tool kit. The homeless man who was trained by Hair Aid last year… got his scissors stolen but undaunted, continued to do haircuts using a pair of kiddie scissors. On a recent trip, he got a replacement for the scissors he lost. Changing his life once again, through the gift of tools and skills.
‘Ed Sudaria sends his thanks to the Hair Aid team. Thank you all for being ENABLERS.’
“It really shows that Hair Aid are making a real change, and we are honoured to help Hair Aid’s cause of teaching people living in poverty haircutting skills. We love seeing the images, as well as hearing stories that make real change within these communities”.
Comfortel joins the ‘Hair Aid Hair-oes’ team, along side Benni Tognini, Tabatha Coffey, Andrew Gomez Dream Foundation, Paul Mitchell Schools, DeLorenzo and Excellent Edges together with their enormous Hair Aid Family who have helped change the lives of people living in poverty; one haircut at a time.
“It’s amazing that people can go from zero skill to being able to cut basic haircuts in five days but seeing in believing” said Selina Tomasich, founder of Hair Aid. “Their desire to learn is fuelled by a desperate need, to be able to earn money through doing basic haircuts. This is a skill they desperately want, so they focus totally during training and they achieve exceptional outcomes”.
Alongside these international projects, Hair Aid has started another offshoot: Hair Aid Community Cuts.
Working in 65+ communities around Australia, volunteer hairdressers travel to various locations every six weeks to provide free haircuts to people who cannot afford them.
Working with organisations volunteers attend domestic violence safe houses, church and community halls, food vans, car parks, street location and youth mental health houses as well as Ronald McDonald Houses every 6 weeks and cut hair for 2-3 hours.
There are now over 65+ locations Australia wide. The demand is so great – and Hair Aid is working to reach more people around the country.
Hair Aid gifted 9,600 free haircuts, providing dignity and respect back to people in our own communities.
You can keep up with Hair Aid’s work by following them on Instagram or Facebook @HairAidAustralia
Want to help Hair Aid in changing lives, one haircut at a time? Sponsor a Comfortel Cutting Kit
At Hair Expo Hair Aid offered salons the opportunity to sponsor cutting kits for $50. Salons were able to write an encouraging message in a card which was added to the kit for the trainees after they completed the five day training. The five training program combined with the kits and the message of inspiration was life changing!
Hair Aid has set a goal to have 300 kits sponsored each year.
Change a life today, and sponsor a kit for a person in need.
Go to www.hairaid.org.au