Pirate FM News 2 minute read

PHOTOS: Inspiring Man Giving Free Hair Cuts To The Homeless


Published at 10:14am 2nd June 2016.

An inspiring man from Exeter is offering free haircuts to the homeless.

Joshua Coombes spends his free time travelling the world offering his services for free. He can often be found back at home in Exeter meeting familiar faces.

He is usually accompanied by his friend Matt Spracklen who is a photographer eager to catch the shots in action.

The pair aims to raise awareness about homelessness and do this by documenting their experience on the photo sharing site Instagram.

You can often see before and after photos of the haircuts with plenty of smiling faces.

Coombes and Spracklen are both founders of the #DoSomethingForNothing campaign. The hash tag and Instagram page also shares an insight into their journey and continues to raise awareness.

Each post shares a glimpse into the individual’s life or is a reminder to make a difference in someone’s life.

One post reads: “Let your love shine wherever you are this week. You can be the difference to somebody’s day. Reach out and #DoSomethingForNothing.”

This is the lovely Michelle. She has been homeless for the last four years now. Back in 2012 she lost her husband and told me that things spiralled out of control for her when this happened. Emotionally torn, she turned to drugs, drink and anything to ease that pain. She was really open and honest with me, saying that drugs have always played a role in her life but after this event she lost control of when she used. I could tell she is still trying to pick up the pieces and to move on with her life but she's struggling. It was lovely to see the change in confidence during Michelle's haircut, with each snip of the scissors she was more talkative and let her personality shine. When I was cutting her fringe, face to face she said "We're usually invisible out here, but today I feel like people can see me" We parted with big smiles after spending an hour getting to know each other. Your time is the most precious gift. - @joshuacoombes #DoSomethingForNothing

A photo posted by #dosomethingfornothing (@dosomethingfornothing) on

@joshuacoombes - This is Darak. He was one of my first street clients when I started this a year ago. I always bump into Darak when I'm back in my hometown, Exeter. I've tried my best to follow his journey, watching him go through high and low points in his life and how homelessness has effected him. After a long struggle with addiction I'm really happy to say he's going into rehab this week to make a new start. He has people around him that really care and I know he'll come out on the other side. I've got so much love for this man, he has a heart of gold and a great outlook on the world. His positivity and optimistic nature shine through to everyone he meets %uD83D%uDE4C%uD83C%uDFFC I'm so sure that when he starts a new chapter he'll excel at anything he wants to do. It was great to hook him up with a fresh haircut before he goes away for a little while. Stay strong brother %uD83D%uDC4A%uD83C%uDFFC #DoSomethingForNothing

A photo posted by #dosomethingfornothing (@dosomethingfornothing) on

This is Ashleigh, 28 years old. She had a sad story to tell - Ashleigh was made homeless six months ago after a violent and abusive relationship ended. Her ex partner is now in prison due to other violent acts. Ashleigh has a nine year old son that she loves and cherishes more than anything in this world. She said 'I have no poison or addiction, my child is all the strength I need.' This made it even more heart breaking when she told me she had to put her son in foster care when things went from bad to worse in her relationship. She didn't want him to be around that kind of violence at home and didn't see another choice. Now Ashleigh is battling to get back into the system, to find housing and work, to hopefully be reunited with her child as soon as possible. Ashleigh's haircut was difficult, technically speaking. She had hacked at it herself after being turned away from several Hairdressers because her hair was dirty and she had contracted head lice. I can't imagine the rejection she felt after that. It led her to feeling like the only option was doing it on her own with poor scissors, taking off a lot more than she wished and wanting to wear a beanie since she cut it. I could feel she was really low on self esteem so it was so nice to at get her back on track and even things out to create a shape. She said every day she dreams of a better day %uD83D%uDE4C%uD83C%uDFFC I'm dreaming with you. When Ashleigh approached me she said you must be the street barber I've heard so much about. Shout out to my bro Nasir @thestreetsbarber %uD83D%uDE4F%uD83C%uDFFC while I'm here in Melbourne. Constantly giving and inspiring the masses. Love and respect. #dosomethingfornothing #cleancutstart #melbourne #australia #hairdresser #homeless #streets #communityfirst

A photo posted by Joshua Coombes (@joshuacoombes) on

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