Haircuts 4 Homeless: Experiences in Manchester

Haircuts 4 Homeless founder Stewart Roberts gives the homeless a voice with his new podcast, “Hear Me, See Me.” Via weekly features, Roberts’ podcast highlights the stories of homeless people and the experiences of Haircuts 4 Homeless volunteers.

As part of our ongoing series highlighting the Haircuts 4 Homeless team, we’d like to share a moving experience with you.

Jackie McColl leads the Haircuts 4 Homeless team in Manchester, England. McColl’s involvement with Haircuts 4 Homeless began unconventionally. With a heart for serving her community, McColl first attempted to offer her services to the homeless independently. When McColl learned about Haircuts 4 Homeless, she immediately contacted Stewart for an opportunity to work full time for a cause she believed in. She soon became team leader at Manchester – altogether, she grew Haircuts 4 Homeless to ten locations in Northern England in total.

McColl’s journey to working with Haircuts 4 Homeless begins with life “dragging her down.” From family illnesses to personal health problems, McColl had too much to juggle. Overwhelmed and overworked, McColl gave up her salon business. Following the decision, she struggled with low confidence for quite a while – she could not drag herself back to her old confidence levels. 

Then McColl joined Haircuts 4 Homeless – and that’s when an important life lesson surfaced. As McColl and Stewart discuss in the podcast, “no matter how low you feel about yourself, the biggest antidote to your problems is helping someone else through their problems.” Movingly, McColl admits that the homeless she serves help her more than she helps them. 

That doesn’t mean McColl’s experiences with Haircuts 4 Homeless don’t impact her – many interactions with her clients impact her to the core. McColl briefly refers to one particular pregnant young woman who came to the center with her boyfriend. She describes going home and feeling guilt, knowing the young pregnant woman will be sleeping outdoors that night. McColl goes on to explain how interacting with her clients is more than just giving a haircut. It’s about interacting meaningfully, encouraging the homeless, and keeping an eye out for their wellbeing. 

McColl is a woman with a mission. She is a warrior for Haircuts 4 Homeless — she is now launching an additional five projects.  

Zenoti is proud to partner with Haircuts 4 Homeless, and bring attention of unheard voices. You can listen to the complete interview with McColl here. 

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