Building Opportunity that Yields Success


The Program

The purpose of the Barbershop BOYS initiative is to address the disproportional amount of CYF cases involving young African-American males by providing activities, workshops and services that support the following components of Self-Care:

  • Self-Worth
  • Self-Discipline
  • Self-Compassion
  • Self-Indulgence

The Barbershop BOYS initiative takes a holistic approach to Self-Care and incorporates the following program components:

  • Haircare and personal hygiene services provided by local barbershops and arranged by their Small Seeds “Youth Coach”
  • Quarterly Workshops teaching participants to embrace the importance of self-care and not view it as a one-time or reactionary event.
  • Community Mentors that give participants the chance to form relationships with caring adults, build skills, exercise leadership, and help in their school and communities.
  • Activities focusing on the development of assets and competencies in all participants - learning how to cooperate, make friends, and negotiate conflicts.

The ABC's of Self-Care

  • Awareness – Be attuned to your needs and practice self-acceptance. Develop the habit of “checking yourself.”  
  • Balance – Maintain a healthy balance among your activities. Balance school, family life, rest and leisure. Remind yourself that you deserve to have a meaningful and enjoyable life outside of school.
  • Connection – Maintain supportive relationships to elicit support and avoid isolation. Connections can also increase feelings of hope.

Anticipated Outcomes

  • Enhancing appearance of participants on an ongoing basis when attending school, hearings, home visits, and social activities.
  • Reducing truancy due to embarrassment and/or bullying from unkempt appearance
  • Improving self-esteem, demeanor, and behavior
  • Increasing knowledge and skills about how to maintain healthy hair and a neat appearance
  • Exposing participants to potential careers in self-care and related vocational fields
  • Increasing social exposure and cultural knowledge and skills


Self-Care Workshops

The workshops teach children and youth to practice everyday maintenance and well-being and cover the following topics:

  • What is Self-Care
  • The Benefits and Stressors of Self-Care
  • Strategies for Maintaining Self-Care

Workshop Learning Objectives:

  • Define self-care and talk about its relationship to stress management and personal growth and development
  • Discuss self-care stressors and when and where you may be frequently exposed to them
  • Reflect on the benefits and rewards of being more self-care aware
  • Review self-care secondary or vicarious trauma and its causes,effects, and warning signs

Community Mentors

In-addition to advancing the development of African American boys, the barbers and stylists at our partnering businesses act as community mentors for the children and youth, extending support and sustainable achievement beyond the initial program. Small Seeds acts as a facilitator in this process of community building that culturally, for African American communities, has been a staple in our Barbershops and Hair Salons.


Small Seeds provides social exposure activities that emphasize opportunities to support African American male children and youth in developing a sense of a competence, usefulness, belonging, and empowerment

These activities may include but are not limited to:

  • College, Trade and Technical School Field Trips and Site Visits
  • Guest Speakers (Professionals in the Self-Care Area)
  • Leadership & Entrepreneurial Development
  • Dating Violence Workshops
  • Public Speaking Training

For more information about the Barbershop BOYS initiative, please contact:

 Keino Fitzpatrick
Director of Programs
412-665-2810 ext. 217