Six teenagers from the Giggetty housing estate in Wombourne have been brushing up their skills in hairdressing in a bid to make a career in the profession, thanks to recent support from South Staffordshire Police and South Staffordshire Housing Association (SSHA). A joint initiative has seen a 12 week scheme set up at Hi-Lites hair salon, on the High Street for the girls, aged between 13 and 17 years old, to develop their skills.
Salon owner, Denise Crowther, comments: “The idea for the scheme was originally developed between our salon team and Police Community Support Officer Paula Wilkes, but we couldn’t secure any funding and the idea was shelved. So we were delighted when SSHA, which has a strong presence in the local community, stepped in to facilitate the scheme. It is designed to give interested young people a helping hand on the career path by showing them a variety of techniques, both practical and theory based.
“Over the 12 weeks, the girls have shadowed our salon manager, Elita Richardson, and junior stylist Jodie Watson, and by the end were able to master a variety of skills.”
She continues: “Following its success we have appointed course attendee 15 year old Natasha Graham, a Year 10 pupil at Ounsdale High School, as a weekly day release to give her a greater chance of a job in the future, and apply the skills she learnt on the scheme.
“We now hold Assessor accreditation and hope to secure more funding to continue working with other local schools in a similar way. This is all great news for the young people in the local community, which undoubtedly would not have happened without the initial involvement of the Police and SSHA.”
Laura Hart, from South Staffordshire Housing Association, adds: “As a developer and manager of homes in the local area, we are keen to play our part in developing initiatives, particularly where they benefit young people. In today’s economic climate they need more help and encouragement than ever to invest in their education and training for the future, and this scheme is a great example of this commitment. We are now working with Denise and Elita at the salon to secure funding for trainer’s courses as the next step forward.”