You might think that Hair & Beauty Charity is just for hairdressers and beauty therapists, but during the pandemic they’ve been helping more barbers that have fallen on hard times than ever before.
We caught up with Charity President, Samantha Grocutt, to find out more about the charity, how the industry can help and why the Hair & Beauty charity is truly there for barbers too.
So what IS the Hair & Beauty Charity?
We are the official industry charity that supports the professional hair, barbering and beauty
industry. We were established in 1853 as the Hairdressers’ Orphan Fund and have had
various name changes over the years from the Hair & Beauty Benevolent and Hairdressers’
Charity but rebranded last year to the Hair & Beauty Charity. We’d continued to support
those from all three sectors, so it made sense to change our name.
But what do you actually do?
We help professionals in our industry who have fallen on hard times with financial support.
This can be a one-off grant, short term support such as a 3-month COVID-19 financial
package or can be regular financial support for many years. It really depends on each case
and what people need help with.
How are you helping barbers specifically?
Regardless of the industry sector, we help people that need it. Within the barbering
community we’re starting to see an increase in requests for help, it’s not necessarily linked to
COVID-19 but is more long term than that. Homelessness, sickness, drug dependency, and
even food bank support is a recurring request for help. One of our beneficiaries is a 48 year
barber who has grade 3 brain cancer. He’s unable to work during treatment so we’re
financially supporting him and his teenage son whilst undergoing treatment. We’re also
supporting a number of barbers who have been homeless and are now being rehomed and
will be looking for work once COVID-19 lockdown is lifted.
How have you helped barbers during the COVID-19 crisis?
We’ve been supporting barbers on a short 3 month term directly linked to the COVID-19
crisis who have not being eligible for government support but have needed funds to survive.
We’ve been awarding beneficiaries with a one-off grant to help with day to day living, which
has definitely helped. As a charity, we’ve had an 160% increase in people asking us for help
during the COVID-19 crisis (Jan-June 2019 v 2020) with a 95% increase in the financial
grants awarded in the same time frame. We’ve become a lifeline to so many people in our
industry, barbers included.
What can you help with – and what can’t you help with?
On our website we have a section that explains how we help; you need to have been
working as a barber for at least 3 years and we priortise those who have illnesses,
disabilities, homelessness, mental health concerns, those who become sudden carers and
can no longer work, bereavement that affect working, and those without sufficient income to
meet basic needs. We can’t help with debts, business costs, training or if you have savings
over £500. Our website has lots of useful advice and a form you can complete for support.
What can the barbering industry do to support the charity?
Even though we’ve been established for over 150 years, still so many people and companies
don’t know we exist and can help those who need it. We know how supportive the barbering
world is so we hope you will get behind us, share our story, follow us on social media, get
talking about us in the staff rooms and at event meet ups (when they happen again).
If you’re a barbering brand, can you help us get our message out to your customers? Is there anything you can do to support us financially? Andis has recently become
a sponsor and kindly donated to our COVID1-9 Relief Fund too. We’re so grateful for this
type of support as it’s much needed especially as we can’t really fundraise at the moment.
If you need financial support or would like to fundraise or donate, please visit
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