The pioneering business model will be staffed entirely by former homeless people, ex-military servicemen, care leavers and people leaving prison, with profits going directly back into the charity.
Set up by the Skullfades Foundation, the community barber shop will be unveiled by Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham in Stretford Mall on Sunday 20th October.
The Skullfades Foundation was first conceived by Ged King, who began by offering free haircuts to Manchester’s homeless community. The work progressed to supplying food, hygiene kits, clothing and support – as seen on BBC3’s ‘Amazing Humans’ series.
Crucially, the foundation also trains disadvantaged people in barbering and business skills and offers one-to-one personal development, in order to enhance their chances of securing full-time employment.
Frustrated by the lack of opportunities available to people in the community, who have shown willingness and determination to change their lives, Ged King wanted to help bridge the gap. He created the concept for the new shop and refitted the unit himself with help from friends of the foundation.
The barber shop will be staffed entirely by individuals who have been helped and trained by the team at Skullfades.
Ged King, founder of the Skullfades Foundation and TEDx speaker, said: “It’s our goal to help eradicate homelessness in the city by providing individuals with the skills, self-worth and opportunity to thrive in a positive environment.
“We are watching our guys turn their lives around and it’s astonishing too see what people can do with the right opportunity.
“Skullfades barber shop has a great reputation and our foundation shop will be no different – maintaining the same high standards of modern barbering.
“We are incredibly excited that the profits will be used to open more shops regionally, which will allow us to continue our work across the country. We believe this is a powerful initiative as it is a practical solution to prevent homelessness.”
Sponsors will be able to support each of the five chairs in the barber shop – costing £500 per month for the corporate package and £20 per month for individuals. The money will help towards the trainees’ wages, associated costs and all tools and products.
Ged commented: “We’ve already secured two of our corporate sponsors and they are delighted to be involved.
“They will get to know the individual they are helping, and witness lives being changed for the better. We hope the people of Manchester – and the UK, will get behind this project and watch what a difference it will make. The results will speak for themselves.”
The Skullfades Foundation Barber Shop
Venue: Stretford Mall
Date: From Sunday 20th October