Local Stylists Give Haircuts for the Homeless
Yaffa Beauty by Rica restoring a little humanity one haircut at a time
Owner & Lead Stylist, Rica Mendes, has been working with this group since 2017 through the Reform Temple of Rockland's school and youth group. Mendes has worked their as an educator and school assistant for several years, and when the students began volunteering for the warming center, she began offering her services as a cosmetologist.
"What I do, as a stylist, is defined by something I learned while studying at Paul Mitchell the School - that I'm a day-maker. Or, as a popular internet meme reads, 'Stylists touch more hearts than hair.'" Mendes continues, I find that it's not even the end result of the cut that makes the difference, it's when these people, who often feel forgotten or invisible, are touched by another human being and treated with dignity. I want my students to see each individual as an individual, worthy of respect. I want to give the people we volunteer for the opportunity to tell their stories, know that they are being heard, and that they are cared for. And it's important that my students see that, and it reminds me and my colleague to be grateful and humble. Someone once pointed out that we are all just 7 paychecks away from being homeless."
Mendes brought team member, Jessica Xhuti, of Watertown, CT, with her across the Governor Mario Cuomo Bridge into Rockland County to join her. "I really enjoy doing this. I like to meet new people and learning their back history, what they've been through," as Xhuti explains why she is willing to drive 2 hours each way for this event. "I like to give back because not everyone has the same opportunities as I do, and I don't want to take anything for granted. So, the 2-hour drive is nothing to me in comparison."
Between the two stylists, Yaffa Beauty by Rica attended to and pampered over a dozen individuals Tuesday night. Continuting to give back, Yaffa Beauty by Rica will be shaving heads at O'Neill's Irish Pub's St. Baldrick's Fundraiser from 3-7:30 on Saturday, March 9, 2019. For more information, go to http://www.yaffabeautybyrica.com.
Yaffa Beauty by Rica