Joshua Santiago is a man with a big heart. He’s best known as a founder of Empowering Cuts, a non-profit organization providing free haircuts to homeless people. He doesn’t only do charity work in his local town, but travels all around the U.S.
It all began when he started his studies to become a barber. His teacher, Mr. Howard, would take the whole class to shelters to practice how to cut hair because none of them had experienced it.
“His method was ‘we are going give back to the homeless but at the same time, you guys get to learn how to cut hair’. Honestly, the feeling of being able to provide a free haircut to someone that was currently homeless meant more to me than to actually receive money for it, so at that point I knew I wanted to do this for the rest of my life,” Santiago said in an interview for VoyageLA.
That was the moment when he realizes he would provide homeless people free services. In 2017 he founded Empowering Cuts, and three years later it became a non-profit organization. According to Santiago, it is not only about the haircuts, but the conversations he has with the people as well.
“What I mean by that is the conversations I have with them are life-changing I have been able to help countless individuals into treatment centers and reconnected them with a family that they haven’t seen in years.”