MODERN received an extremely heartwarming story from Barber Gregory Dennis, Dudes and Dads Barbershop in St. Thomas, Ontario. Here, Dennis describes his philantrhopic efforts in Cuba to help those with few possessions find success in their hairdressing careers. Here's Dennis' story:
"Being Canadian, I go to Cuba quite a bit. Seems like almost all Canadians love it there, or wish they could visit it. I've been there once before in Cayo Coco, Cuba.
"I met up with Maicole, who is a taxi driver. He gave me a tour once before, and I kept his contact info. I gave him a ring when I returned to Cuba to go for another tour, and to catch up with him. We went to the nearest town to find their local barbers and to connect with them. It was then that I found a barber there named Jusmani. He didn't have much in tools or a station. An old chair, a bed sheet for a cape, one Wahl designer clipper, and an old barber shear.
"I went back a year later to reconnect with my Cuban friends. I surprised Jusmani and his family with gifts for the kids, and tools for him: a Paul Mitchell Cape, three shears, a Wahl Barbacide canister with a barber pole print, tons of combs, brushes, a soap puck, razors, a shavette holster, etc. They were all in shock!
"We later talked, caught up with each others news, and gave each other hair cuts. I then gave my Cuban friend Maicole a haircut as a live demo for Jusmani to learn from. I showed him some new techniques, some old school 1950's American razor hair cutting techniques, and some pointers. He had ambition, and passion for the industry.
"We changed each others lives forever. I am forever thankful to pass on knowledge, change a life for him, his family, and clients, as well to make a friend. This experience is one of my lifetime favorites. It only takes a little bit to make such a drastic change in the world. Be a positive force. We rise by lifting up others. If you have much, give your wealth; if you have little, give your heart!"