To pay his bills, Joshua Santiago of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, drives for Uber. When he’s not working, he’s pursuing what he’s passionate about and finding a sense of purpose. Even better, he’s helping people in need!
In 2017, he launched the nonprofit Empowering Cuts, which provides haircuts to “homeless, military veterans, children, and families who are experiencing financial hardships.” With every haircut, he gives his clients a new look, completely free of charge — and a new sense of confidence!
When Joshua was growing up, his family couldn’t afford to take him to a barber. His dad did his best to cut his hair, but Joshua said he would “mess it up every time.”
That’s what inspired him to become a barber himself! At school, he learned the trade by getting hands-on experience at community shelters. Seeing the impact a simple haircut made for the residents he worked with, Joshua decided he didn’t want to style for a living. Instead, he would do it for free!
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To date, he has provided more than 7,500 free haircuts to people in need in over 20 cities across the U.S. And that’s just the beginning! He recently purchased an RV, which he plans to transform into a mobile barbershop so he can reach even more people.
Empowering Cuts has become Joshua’s biggest passion for the best reason.
“For me, honestly, being able to provide a free haircut to somebody that couldn’t afford it meant more to me than to actually receive money for it,” he said.
As if that wasn’t enough, the free service is often life-changing for his clients!
“A lot of times when they get out of the chair they are crying,” he added. “You got a lot of people saying, ‘I want to sign myself into recovery right now.'”
What an incredible way to give back! Consider joining him in making a difference by helping him remodel his RV through GoFundMe.
Learn more about Empowering Cuts in the video below, and don’t forget to share this story with your friends.
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