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Abingdon & Witney College hairdressing tutor part of Oxfordshire mental health charity collective

13th Oct 2020

Leanne Hughes, hairdressing lecturer at the College’s Abingdon campus, is part of a collective of barbers and hair professionals who are helping clients with their mental health in barber shops and salons across the county.

The charity, The Lions Barber Collective, have been providing free online training sessions through the programme BarberTalk, to help professionals identify signs of changing behaviours in their clients and provide support when they actively need it.

“Some people might not talk to anybody else that day, maybe working from home,” said Leanne. “To go to a barber shop or salon and to be able to just have that thirty minute talk might release that something that they feel they can’t share with their closer network.”

Having successfully secured a council bid just before lockdown to deliver the training, the charity says it's important that clients feel they have a safe space to discuss any challenges they are facing, but that it is crucial professionals also don't overstep the mark.

With fully-operating salons at both the Witney and Abingdon campuses, Hair & Beauty staff and students at the College will benefit greatly from an online training session delivered by the charity later this month.

Watch Leanne's interview with BBC South Today: