Barber Connect meets: Guerrilla Barbering
If you’ve never heard of Guerrilla Barbering, then here’s your chance to find out more about a great cause! Guerrilla Barbering is made up of a group of barbers who are aiming to help the less fortunate. Their main aim is to help young people enter the world of work, more specifically a trade based creative industry. They’ve also collaborated with homeless charity CentrePoint on numerous occasions. We caught up with founder of Guerilla Barbering founder Myles Lewis for a quick chat!
Hi Myles, what made you come up with the idea of Guerrilla Barbering?
Guerrilla was an idea I had a while back, initially I wanted to go on the streets of London with a fold out chair and my cordless tools and scissors, offer free haircuts to anyone who passes. If I received any tips I go somewhere local, grab some grub and handed it out to the homeless if they wanted it, as a good will gesture. I just wanted to put a smile on someone’s face with the skills that I have. I shared my ideas with a few friends and from there it snowballed almost out of control! We went public with a plea for barbers to come and join in and the response we had was unreal! It was already too big to take to the streets so with the help of Sam Campagna, Chris Austin and Luke Hammond we arranged a pop up shop in the heart of Shoreditch. From the start of it all to now we work at shows and events like Barber Connect to spread the word of what we do and how others can help people who are less fortunate than themselves.
In November you slept rough for a night in aid of charity, how did you find it?
Yes we did the Centrepoint sleep out that is an annual event. Myself, Jake Lansley, Kem Cetinay, Chris Austin, Holly Regis and Nathan Brabury all took part and it was a real eye opener for us, just to have the slightest realisation of what people on the streets have to deal with in those conditions. Between us we made around £3000 and the whole total was close to half a million pounds.
How important do you think the barber shop environment is to mans mental health?
We did an interview with a newspaper on mental health last year and like we said the barber shop isn’t just a service. It can be a hang out, a place to chill for many people and a place to be social with your customers. We find talking really helps those who sometimes need a rant or get things off their chest. Letting people know that we are here for them is a major part of what we do and spotting people with any mental health issue is a big part to be played in their recovery and help.
What’s the long term plans for Guerrilla Barbering?
The Guerrilla Barbering Accademy, The international Guerrilla Gang…keep your eyes peeled!