Cutz-n-Curlz provides fresh styles, opportunity for building relationships
Students of all ages turned out for the annual Cutz-n-Curlz, where they scored free haircuts and fresh styles for the 2019-20 school year. “They feel like a new person with a sense of confidence,” said Marc Petitfrere, manager of King Kuts in Lexington, which brought its entire staff of barbers to help with the Aug. 12 back-to-school event. “King Kuts is family-oriented, and this is the community we come from, so we always want to give back,” he added.
First Baptist Church Winchester sponsors Cutz-n-Curlz, which expanded to Fayette County last year. Pastor Marvin King said his church knew that students in Lexington could benefit as well, noting, “It’s a great alignment of our mission.”
Families dropped in throughout the day at host site Frederick Douglass High School, where FCPS staff signed in students and funneled them to meet a barber or stylist upstairs in the main gym. In the first few chairs, men from King Kuts took in a steady flow of young customers. “We had no idea what (Cutz-n-Curlz) was, but we’re all in,” said Petitfrere, whose shop was among first-time volunteers.
While waiting their turn, students and families mingled in the two gymnasiums and adjacent areas – enjoying hot dogs, exploring STEM activities, checking out the REAL Men Read station, and picking up bags of free school supplies collected by Cumulus Broadcasting in a recent Stuff the Bus challenge at Fayette Mall. Students even lined up for vision screening, courtesy of the Lexington Lions Club.
Cutz-n-Curlz also gave staff from Fayette County Public Schools an opportunity to greet families and explain some of the district’s resources. Employees from several offices were on hand, including Child Nutrition (Food Service), Student Support Services, Teaching & Learning, Special Education, English Language Learners, Gifted & Talented Services, and Educating Boys of Color.
Thanks to this ongoing collaboration with First Baptist Winchester, the school district has another chance to connect with students – finding out their families’ needs and pulling resources together for a collective impact. “Partnerships hinge on authentic relationships,” said Darryl Thompson, equity officer for FCPS. “This partnership is about giving people a hand up.”