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Akron barber college provides 300 free haircuts to kids returning to school

Akron's Beyond Expectations Barber College also arranged for free bookbags and school supplies to save families some money on Tuesday.

AKRON, Ohio — At Beyond Expectations Barber College (BEBC) on Romig Road in Akron, things were hopping on Tuesday! 

Barbers and those in training "busted the dos" of kids heading back to school. 

It's been busy. "Out of control busy!" says Eric Garrett Jr., owner of BEBC. "With the Grace of God, we've been able to service 300 kids. We've been able to put a smile on 300 faces, and that's 300 families not having to worry about the burden of a haircut."

Those families appreciate the free cuts. 

Akron resident Valerie Hammond says the hair of both her grandsons, Jensen and Jacob, looked "like mops," she laughed. Valerie has attended previous BEBC haircutting events. "They do a good job here. We're blessed." 

The barbers did some fine work on the 300 kids that sat for them. They also held a friendly competition on who could trim the most kids. Isaiah and Jawann tied for most cuts with 31 apiece, proudly displaying their trophies. 

Barber college student Isaiah Johnson says the boost in self-esteem really helps as the kids go back to school. "I know that giving a kid a good haircut will make them feel good." 

"When you see somebody, especially children, get out of your chair, leaving with a smile on their face, that always puts a smile on my face as well," adds barber Jawann Canty.

"Family First" donated bookbags with supplies to go along with free haircuts. Over 300 families benefitted and it is making a difference. 

"So when they (students) go to school, they're in a good place. They're smiling, ready to show off that amazing haircut," Garrett says.

But there's something bigger at work here.

"We believe it's about more than cutting hair. It's about being in the community and letting everybody know that we're here for them and just giving back to the community," explains BEBC community outreach director Jerrison Wyatt.

Valerie and her grandkids couldn't agree more. She left the college with a heartfelt "thank you" along with her grandsons, bookbags on their shoulders.

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