CPS Host’s Their Second Annual Back To School Hair-A-Thon

CPS Host’s Their Second Annual Back To School Hair-A-Thon

This isthe second year that CPS has put on The Back To School Hair-A-Thon for childrenin the community and their guardians who could use a hand in helping themtransition back into the classroom. “I came to get my granddaughter’s hairfixed, so they can be ready for school.”, says Julia Sparks. When asked about the whole experience, with asmile on her face Sparks added, ” They have received very good service. Ireally appreciate it.” Sparks wasn’t the only one with asmile on her face or who could see the value in The Hair-A-Thon. Hair stylist Lucy Rico at Salon Sheron’ whenasked how she thought today’s events would benefit the children, she was quickto respond. “I think it will help a lotwith their self-esteem, and to help them feel ready for school.” mentions Rico.She also felt the services that were provided by The Hair-A-Thon would helpchildren be less distracted.{{more}} “That’s one thing that they’re not thinking like”Oh, I need a haircut.” or ”Oh, I’m the only one without a hair cut.”,Rico. “It just helps them be able toconcentrate on learning.” She is adamant in explaining that in essence it willhelp to break down what might otherwise be a barrier to that learning. When asked why she does what shedoes, Lucy mentions that she recently graduated from Neecee’s College ofCosmetology. Lucy shares, “I chose to go there specifically because they taughtyou all types of hair, all ethnicities…and that’s one of my main purposes for megoing there.” She shares that shelearned so much. During the Hair-A-Thon, she got a chance to some of what she’slearned on 5 yr old Sayyonce .Rico says that now she can help children of all different ethnicitiesand with different hair types, when they might not otherwise have the means ora place to go where someone understands their hair type. There is no doubt that Lucy is not onlythankful for what she has learned but even more excited for opportunity to apply what she’s learned.She ends with this, “Anytime that I can help the children, I love to dothat!” Lucy has four children of her own and is very passionate about what shedoes each and every day. Also in attendance at theHair-A-Thon, were volunteer CPS workers. CPS is the organization that put theservice event on. They helped pass outmany of the take-home gifts that had been prepared for them by different localorganizations. One of thoseorganizations was Abilene Pediatrics. Community Relations Director for AbilenePediatrics Rebecca Martinez was there dressed as the tooth fairy. “It’s a great event that gives kids a chanceto feel good when they go back to school.” says Martinez. She says that the CPS staff has been great,handing out all sorts of goodies. “We’rehanding out free toothbrushes and free toothpaste for the Nichelle Wall, Michelle Ware, Leslie Davidson, Cshenal Jackson, Angela Olvera and Latricia Johnson, All CPS workers, participated as volunteers at this year’s Second Annual Hair-A’-Thon. On the last day it was held at Salon Sheron. This Hair-A-Thon was put on by Abilene Child Protective Services. Photo by: Sienna Millerkids”, she adds. Inaddition, Martinez was giving both child and parental health education on theimportance of taking care of your teeth. Rebecca’s table of sorts was set upright by the door and entrance of Salon Sheron’s. With the table’s uniqueplacement, She along with the CPS workers got the privilege of greeting thekids as they came in and getting to see them as they were leaving. “The girls are walking out of here feelinglike they’re little princesses…And the guys with their haircuts, are walkingout of here looking and feeling like a million bucks!” adds Martinez. The kids would stop and pose for the camerashots. “They were feeling like it waspaparazzi!” She says with a big smile on her face. Martinez ends with stating that a child’slevel of confidence carries over into their schoolwork, “It’s a great thing!” Standingclose to Martinez was CPS worker Cshenal Jackson. Cshenal is a Foster/AdoptCertification Specialist and she was the one holding the camera. Cshenal sharesthat the first two days of the Hair-A-Thon this year was held at The TexasCollege of Cosmetology. On this day itwas held at Salon Sheron’s where the Owner and nail tech is Sheron’ Warren.”Today is the last of three days where we’ve done children’s hair for5 year Sayyonce gets excited as her stylist Lucy places beads at the end of her hair. This is her first year participating in the Hair-A-Thon. She is looking forward to starting kindergarten the following week. Photo by: Sienna Millerfree. Anyone from the community waswelcome to come and participate.” says Jackson. While the mission was to helpservice low-income families, there was no child that was turned away. This was about community. Goodie bags, popcorn, snacks and an array of hairaccessories were given to the children.Jackson says that from what she’s seen, today has been very exciting; asshe’s watched children of all ages walk out with big smiles on their faces andposing for the camera, ready to take pictures.”It has been very exciting and rewarding for us as well.” adds Jackson,in reference to herself, as well as for the other volunteers. Jackson says that for these children to beable to come in and to tell the stylists how they want their hair done, opposedto someone just doing it the way that they see fit, is very empowering to thesechildren. Cshenaltells that as CPS workers, this is just a way that they can give back to thecommunity. Jackson says that while formany of them this is their first year participating in the Hair-A-Thon, theyare already making plans for next year!She says that they want to make it even bigger and better. At the particular time that I spoke with her,she said that they had already serviced 55 children in the Abilene andsurrounding area. That says a lot about the success of this year’s Hair-A-Thon.Needless to say, that the children were still coming through the door as I wason my way out.