Barber gives free haircuts to blind matric pupils

Calvin Smith, right, and client Jerome Miller.

Calvin Smith, 38, owner of HairMcAnix, will, for the second time in as many years, offer his tonsorial services to the Bellville school’s pupils.

Last year, a Facebook friend challenged him to pamper 15 pupils for free, and he’s up again for the challenge this year. He plans to call in reinforcements from his former protégés now running barbershops of their own across the city if need be

The busy barber, with whom one has to make an appointment before going for a haircut, usually sees 10 clients a day at his Kerk Street business, but he has offered to increases the number of heads he will cut on Wednesday September 28, a day before the pupils’ matric ball at the Rondebosch Golf Club. He cut 15 pupils for last years’ matric ball and said he would cut around the same figure on Wednesday.

“Cutting their hair is a pleasure to me. I’ll do my best to put a smile on their faces,” he said. “I wake up early in the morning to do this because of passion for it. It’s my devotion and that’s just me.”

Mr Smith, who regularly cuts A-list celebrities, including TV personality Katlego Maboi and R&B artist Loyiso Bala, among others, promised that the pupils “are sure to get advanced haircuts” on Wednesday.

Mr Smith will go to the Lofdal drug rehabilitation centre in Kraaifontein next month, where he will set up a workshop and offer one-year apprenticeships to some of the recovering addicts, who will work for him during the course of next year.

Jerome Miller, a regular client at the barbershop, heaped praise on Mr Smith for his kind initiative. “He’s very professional. I think it’s an awesome initiative.

“We need to see more entrepreneurs giving back to the community.”

Vera Petersen, manager of marketing and fund-raising at Athlone School for the Blind, thanked Mr Smith for helping the pupils, many of whom cannot afford to pay for the haircuts.