Total loan: $7,500
Chicago, IL, United States / Retail
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A loan helped fund the purchase of new equipment for students and build out the appearance and functionality of the barber school.
I grew up in the North Lawndale community on Chicago’s West Side, home to many members of the black underclass, whose lives are buried in a subculture of violence, crime, joblessness, alcoholism and drug addiction. Growing up and not having basic essentials was a part of every day life. Knowing that I wanted better for myself and where I came from gave me the extra desire to open my own business. I had to close my first business, Wonderland Studio & Spa, because of a technicality, and I have since been working on the Westside of Chicago as a Master Barber for 14 years. I would like to open BeautiPro Academy and teach future business owners how to follow their dreams. When I was nine years old, money was limited in our household and my mother would have to cut me and my give brothers' hair because sending six boys to the barbershop was really expensive in those days. She would cut our hair really low and almost bald. I got tired of the kids at school making fun of me, so I asked my mom, “Can I cut my own hair?” She said, “Sure, it’s your head and you have to wear it.” From that day forward, I started cutting my own hair with the hair clippers she used and everyone would ask me, “Who cuts your hair?” When I replied, “I cut it!” Everyone started coming to my house wanting me to cut their hair! Adults would bring their children and after they saw the kids hair, I started cutting more and more adults. All of my brothers brought their friends and their siblings and I would cut hair from sun up to sun down! Let me remind you I was only nine years old!