Danika O'Leary - It’s About Helping People Feel Human AgainMy Big Story
Danika O’Leary shares love and free haircuts to help the people affected by homelessness in her community. Just because she can.
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Danika O’Leary’s good intentions and actions have been making an impact in her community. Her Haircuts for the Homeless program started as a simple act of kindness and has become regular acts of kindness each every other month. She begins by creating outdoor styling stations in a park in Santa Rosa, CA in Northern California, and with the help of local businesses and volunteers, she provides haircuts, food, clothing and personal hygiene products for the homeless thought the area. The event has even helped with people with resumes and job opportunities. She mentioned though, as the size of the events swell, challenges emerge with the required permits, administrative duties, and the cost of necessary equipment. Danika wants to share stories and styles with those who need it most – and make sure the people that are in need are able to feel good about themselves, even from just a small thing like a haircut. Listen in to find out how Danika is making her passion come to life, and how you can get involved, in her community, or yours.
[3:52] Danika’s friends have really pitched in to help her as her Haircuts for Homeless project has grown.
[7:37] The event, which is held in a local park, is more than monetary donations. It’s about sharing time and being there for people.
[12:10] How did Haircuts for Homeless initially begin?
[16:42] We can’t judge people who come to get a haircut no matter their situation, because you never know when they might pay it forward.
[19:20] What are the logistical challenges Danika faces as her program grows and how does she overcome them?
[26:47] Danika would like to see other people take over the administration of the event so she can get back to hands-on experiences she loves, cutting hair and talking to people.
[29:44] There are other people doing similar things in other areas, but they we’re not all connected.
[33:50] What advice does Danika have for people who may want to get involved but aren’t in the area?
[37:18] How do people who live in the Santa Rosa community get involved?
Mentioned in This Episode
“I want it to stay fun and I want the community to be involved any time they want.”
“You don’t have to be Mother Teresa. Sometimes it just starts with little things.”
“Haircuts for the Homeless doesn’t focus on one group of people, but it does intend to assist veterans.”