Sailor’s barber shop helping kids

MS Haines gives a haircut to one of his fellow sailors aboard HMCS Regina.

Sailor’s barber shop gives kids a Jump Start

By Peter Mallett,
The Lookout Staff

If you pass by the stoker’s workshop in HMCS Regina, you might catch a glimpse of that infamous barbershop red and blue pinstripe icon. This is the home of the Greasy Clippers, a makeshift barber shop with MS Jeffrey Haines holding the clippers.

The 34-year-old Marine Engineering Technician is currently on a seven-month deployment in the Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean as part of Op ARTEMIS. On his down time, he heads to his makeshift barbershop to keep his shipmates shipshape, and the fundraising pot growing for Jump Start.

All the proceeds he raises – $5 a hair cut – goes to the Canadian Tire charity that benefits children’s sports. It gives economically disadvantaged youth the chance to participate in organized sports programs and physical activities by paying for equipment, registration fees and other costs.

“It’s a hard concept for kids to understand why their parents can’t afford something,” said MS Haines. “I’ve always loved what Jump Start has stood for because I believe all kids should have the opportunity to play sports no matter what their background or financial situation.”

Jump Start was launched by the Canadian Tire Corporation in 2005. It has assisted over 1.9 million children and last year raised close to $30 million to support community-based sports programs.

The sailor is a self-taught barber and began cutting his and his children’s hair after buying a set of clippers. Two months into Regina’s deployment he has done over 140 haircuts. Along with some generous tips he has raised over $1,000.

The barbershop is his first charity project and took a bit of planning. The week before Regina sailed, he acquired a barber’s apron, neck strips and chair plus a cut-out barber’s pole to help advertise his location to passersby. He brought along his own clippers, scissors and combs, and uses a low-pressure shot of compressed hair from a hose in the stoker’s shop to blow hair off the trimmings. Support from the crew has been strong with many returning for a second and third cut.

With such a lengthy deployment, MS Haines expects plenty of hair growth in need of a trim, which translates to more funds raised.