Dave Lawrence

Nanaimo barber takes payment in kids’ stories

NANAIMO – Dave Lawrence, owner of That 50’s Barbershop, offers free haircuts and school supplies for ages five to 18.

A local barber wants to make sure that children in Nanaimo start the upcoming school year off feeling fresh.

On Sept. 3, Dave Lawrence, owner of That 50’s Barbershop, will provide free haircuts to anyone between the ages of five and 18, provided that they can read him a story or draw him a picture.

It’s all part of the second annual Fresh Start charity event organized by the downtown barbershop.

“I will give them a free back to school hair cut.” Lawrence said. “We can also give them a backpack filled with school supplies and have clothes and books so that they start the school year feeling good because they got a haircut and they have a brand-new backpack.”

Fresh Start was first held last year after Lawrence’s friends told him about a similar event that was done by a barbershop in Washington.

Lawrence said he knows there are families struggling to make ends meet in Nanaimo and decided to organize Fresh Start as a way to give back to the community.

“[Last year] the lineup was all the way out to A&W and I did 60 haircuts in the span of about five hours. We helped out about 60 different families and it was really good,” he said. “It’s a great event and it just helps out a lot of people.”

This year, That 50’s Barbershop has managed to fill around 80 backpacks and is seeking clothing donations, book donations or extra school supplies that people wish to donate.

“We just got a $300 donation from Hired Guns here in town. So we bought $300 worth of school supplies the other day,” he said.

Lawrence said he’s expecting more than double the amount of people to show up this year.

“I think the word is out there with social media and stuff that it is really reaching a lot of people,” he said. “After the event last year there were people coming up to me for weeks asking about it.”

For more information, please visit www.twitter.com/Freshstart1950.

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