One morning a month, Delia, a professional hairstylist, volunteers to cut and style guests’ hair.
The work, she says, is “totally rewarding.”
“I’ve become friends with a lot of the ladies and it is just fun to be here and share our life experiences,” she said.
“I think for people who are recovering or going through hard times, it is important for them to have a good look,” she said. “They need to enjoy how they look.”
“When you are on a tight budget, what is the first thing that you cut back? Your haircuts. They can come here and get their haircut for free.”
Do you have a favorite hairstyle that you’ve cut while being here?
“Today, I did a blunt cut bob on a lady,” she said. “It was kind of a-liney. She had long hair that was starting to go grey and now she has this trendy haircut that is really awesome.”
Before she became a hairstylist, Delia held an office job at AT&T.
She retired and then studied cosmetology and esthetics at the Federico Beauty Institute.
“I was tired of clocking in everyday and being on someone else’s schedule,” she said.
Delia said that she was shocked by the demands of her beauty institute courses — including rote memorization of all the bones in the body and the all the varieties of pimples that can plague the skin.
“In the beginning, truthfully, I didn’t really feel like it was a fit for me,” she said. “It wasn’t going right for me and now I am really loving it and I think the volunteering has helped me embrace it more. Now, I’m at this confident stage where I just know that my clients are going to love their hair.”
What is it like for you to have a relationship with your clients as a hairstylist?
“It is so much fun because they tell me everything,” she said. “You know how they say, your hairstylist is like your therapist – I’ve always felt like I just talked to my clients, but I found myself talking to one my clients who was struggling to get along with her husband and it was really hard because they are both my clients and I love both of them to no end. One day, she was asking me, ‘How do you get along with your husband when you are arguing a lot?’ I said, ‘You know, I just try to be quiet and not argue.’ The next time I saw her, she said, ‘You know, I took your advice and I’m not arguing anymore and we are getting along really well.’”
What does Wellspring mean to you?
“It is a wonderful program and I know for all of the ladies who I have as clients here, they love it,” she said. “They seem like they are in a really good place. I’ve never had one lady who seemed like she felt that the world was falling apart. It just seems like when they are here, they feel so encouraged.”