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Tampa barber shop offers free back-to-school haircuts

New Generation Barber Shop
Posted at 7:46 AM, Aug 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-09 16:42:48-04

TAMPA, Fla.  — Barber shops throughout Tampa Bay are busy this week with back-to-school haircuts, but there is one shop in Tampa that decided to provide its services for free to any and all students in need of a trim.

Dozens and dozens of students hopped into chairs at New Generation Barber Shop on Dale Mabry in South Tampa.

Owner Davis Nguyen said he can’t help but think about when he was a kid getting ready to go back to school.

“I see myself, I see a lot of kids, I see a lot of my friends I grew up with,” said Nguyen.

He knows firsthand how expensive haircuts can be for families.

“I grew up in public housing; that's just the start of it, we didn’t have the best finances growing up,” said Nguyen.

He also knows a new haircut puts a child on the right track when it comes to confidence and self-esteem.

“You know kids got their outfits planned out the day before, shoes, everything laid out at 5 a.m., so you have to have a fresh haircut to go with it, it just compliments everything, and it just puts a smile on their face,” said Nguyen.

So Nguyen and his eight-person staff all dedicated their time and talents on Monday to give as many free back-to-school haircuts as possible, and they had some great requests.

“Dreads, Mohawks, fades, comb-overs, messy styles with a fade, keep it clean,” said Nguyen.

Both parents and students say the whole neighborhood was a buzz about the event.

“It means a lot to give back to the community, to show love right before school. I mean, everybody wants to look good on their first day of school; it’s a presentation, it’s a factor of life,” said father Raja Mahshie.

“It could be $100 bucks or more, especially with people with a lot of kids, so it's really nice of them to give back and give people the opportunity to get a free haircut,” said ninth-grader Amari Montinat.

Thanks to the generosity of other nearby businesses, the first 65 students also received a free backpack. Nguyen said there’s a reason he named his shop New Generation because to him, that’s who matters most.

“It’s about showing love and letting them know this is a spot they can come to for things like this. We are a cornerstone of our community,” said Nguyen.