Restoring dignity and hope
Restoring dignity and providing hope can seem so simple to some, but it is so critical. Providing hope for those who come into REAL LIFE may seem like a challenging task, and it can be, but sometimes it’s the simplest things that can provide motivation in life – maybe even the start of the journey down a different path. Frequently, those we serve have esteem so low, they do not have hope they can ever accomplish anything. Some have never been told by someone else that they proud of them, or they feel as if they have never completed or achieved anything. Many of our homeless clients feel as if they “fit into the landscape,” as people walk by them daily and physically look the other way as they walk by. Therefore, in addition to providing services to those who initiate help themselves by walking through the door of the Center, it is also our calling due to our faith to engage in outreach to others.
Our outreach spans from events like free haircuts for those in need, monthly clothes giveaways, going into areas of our community with high rates of homelessness and prostitution to offer support and encouragement, or community walks with the Richmond Police Department. Through simple acts, we have the ability to show those we encounter that they are loved and hopefully provide a motivation that is lacking. Something as menial as a haircut, proved to restore the pride of many who received a cut, as you will see below:
Sometimes it’s something as simple as a haircut and a new outfit that is clean and in good condition that can give someone the boost of confidence they need to take the next step. We had the privilege of hosting a free hair cut event last month thanks to the service of Armand, a REAL Life client, as well as Christopher Pleasants (Oakwood Hair), Christopher Riggs (Platinum Hair Salon), and Tony Dunaway (True Professional Barber Shop). These men donated close to 10 hours of their time to give nearly 75 people in our community free haircuts. Together, we were able to reach more people in our community who just needed a little helping hand.
See a video of how this haircut made Angela feel when you visit our Facebook!