Laborer finds hope in doing haircuts

Published June 16, 2020, 12:00 AM

by manilabulletin_admin

By Jansen Romero

With a pair of old scis­sors, ra­zor blades, and a bro­ken mo­tor­cy­cle side mir­ror, 44-year-old con­struc­tion worker Joseph Dante who lost his job to the pan­demic re­lied on an old hobby to pull him through hard times.

Ev­ery morn­ing he oc­cu­pies a spot on Kalaw Av­enue which he turns into his al fresco shop and gives street dwellers and se­cu­rity guards a hair cut for ₱30.

JOB SWITCH – Joseph Dante, a construction worker, sidelines as a street corner barber for P30 per head at Kalaw Avenue and A. Mabini to augment his income during the COVID-19 lockdown. (Jansen Romero)
JOB SWITCH – Joseph Dante, a construction worker, sidelines as a street corner barber for P30 per head at Kalaw Avenue and A. Mabini to augment his income during the COVID-19 lockdown. (Jansen Romero)

Joseph, a high school grad­u­ate, grew up in Caloocan where he learned to hair­cut from his el­der brother.

“Noong High School palang tin­u­ruan na akong mag gupit ng ka­p­atid ko sa Caloocan hang­gang nagka-malay at na­punta sa Baseco (When I was in high school in Caloocan my el­der brother taught me how to do hair­cuts un­til I trans­ferred to Baseco),” Joseph told Manila Bul­letin.

He lives with his wife Che-Che at Baseco-1, who, like him, is also job­less.

From Baseco, he walks all the way to Kalaw Av­enue to give home­less peo­ple af­fected by the lock­down a haircut.

“Pamin­san-min­san lalakarin ko hang­gang sa Mabini kasi may mga gin­ugupi­tan akong mga se­cu­rity guard doon sa mga build­ing, (Some­times I walk from Baseco to Mabini street to give se­cu­rity guards a hair­cut,” he shared while trim­ming the hair of a cus­tomer.

Joseph charges P30 for his ser­vices al­though he charges a lower amount when he sees his cus­tomer could only af­ford a few pe­sos.

Joseph be­came vi­ral in the so­cial me­dia giv­ing hair­cut ser­vices to the home­less us­ing his old pair of scis­sors, bro­ken side-mir­ror from a mo­tor­cy­cle and a dust-filled brush.

On Tues­day, June 16, af­ter warm­ing the heart of ne­ti­zens, the pres­i­dent of Bruno’s bar­ber­shop Marco Pas­cual gave Joseph new equip­ment and pro­tec­tive gear to pro­tect him while do­ing hair­cuts. There were cheers and ap­plause from street dwellers as Joseph re­ceived his new hair-cut­ting tools.

Af­ter the cer­e­mony, Dante crossed Kalaw Av­enue to at­tend to a cus­tomer wait­ing for a hair­cut in front of a thrift shop in Mabini.

Asked if he’s go­ing back to the con­struc­tion site, he said,“Nakaka­pani­bago itong mga bagong gunt­ing, pero makukuha ko ‘rin. Pero kung mawala ang lock­down hindi ko alam sir, paki­ram­dam ko ba­ba­lik at ba­ba­lik ako sa pag-gugupit dahil yun ang gusto ko (Am still not used to us­ing new scis­sors but I can master it in time. I do not know if I will still go back to con­struc­tion work but I will al­ways go back to do hair­cuts be­cause this is what I want),” Joseph said with a smile.

For those who want to ex­tend any kind of help to Joseph, you can find him ev­ery morn­ing on Kalaw Av­enue in front of the Na­tional Li­brary.

 
CLICK HERE TO SIGN-UP
 

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

["news","news"]
[1999784,3007960,3007951,3007955,3007938,3007937,3007933]